Raynors HCA 2018-06
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 6/21/2018

A rare Civil War-date Union soldier's account of an ambush that resulted in the death of one of the Civil War's highest ranking Jewish Union officers written by Pvt. Andrew Crawford of the 120th Ohio Volunteers. Born in Germany, Marcus M. Spiegel (1829-1864) came to the United States with his family in the mid 1840's. When the Civil War broke out he joined the Union army as a lieutenant and soon rose in rank. In early 1863, he became colonel of the 120th Ohio, but his promising career was cut short at Snaggy Point, Louisiana on May 3, 1864. Ordered to help reinforce Banks' retreating army as it made its down the Red River. The 120th, on the army transport "City Belle" and its support gunboat, were fired upon by overwhelming artillery and infantry forces that lined the banks of the river at the terminus of a bend just several miles north of the town of Marksville. Accurate artillery fire disabled both vessels forcing the regiment to abandon ship. In the melee a shell fragment mortally wounded Col. Spiegel who died the next day in rebel hands. His brother Joseph, the regimental sutler, was captured while a majority of the other escapes were either killed or wounded. Joseph survived his incarceration at Camp Ford Prison Camp, Texas and in 1865 was released at the end of the war. He returned north to his adopted town, Chicago and immediately opened a mercantile store. In 1905, he published his first mail order merchandise catalog-the now famous Spiegel catalog. Loss of life by war is immediate and permanent. Its impact has a long and lasting effect on the unfortunate one's family, friends and comrades, but in Marcus Spiegel's case it is certain that our nation lost more than just a man whose promising career remained yet to be written. One of the very few who survived the deadly encounter at Snaggy Point was Pvt. Andrew Crawford of Co. K, 120th Ohio. His 2pp. folio, letter from Morganza, La., June 17, 1864 recalls his narrow escape during that bloody encounter and reads, in part: "…I am at Morganza Bend about 50 miles from Port Hudson…the river is falling fast now…I suppose you have heard of the disaster that happened [to] our regt. on Red River on the boats. It was a sad affair to us. We lost our colonel and half of the regt and nearly all the officers. John Camell was killed and Henry Grunder was taken prisoner. I escaped unhurt on the boat that the regt. was on. I got out in the woods and hid myself in the brush until the next day and two gunboats and a transport came along…I got on the transport and started but we did not go far [un]til the rebels opened on us [with] three batteries and the infantry was not idle. At half past 8 o'clock we had to get off of the boat for the rebels was putting it on pretty hot. I was knocked down by a splinter of a shell as I was getting off the boat, but it did not hurt me much. I got up and went up the bank as fast as ever I did in my life…I would not like to go through it again. The corn is coming out in tassel now…the cotton is in bloom…and promises a fair crop. All the niggers that come inside of our lines is sent on a government plantation to work. Some is so lazy that they do not know what to do with themselves…Andrew Crawford." Archival repair at fold splits, light toning, else VG
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Jewish-American Col. Marcus Spiegel-The Brother of Spiegel Catalog Founder-Dies In A Civil War Ambush.

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Bidding
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $300.00
Final prices include buyers premium.: $1,163.75
Estimate: $600 - $800
Auction closed on Thursday, June 21, 2018.

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