2024-01 Raynors Americana Auction
Search By:
This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 1/20/2024
The following letters were written by Henry "Martin" Lowe entered the service in early February 1862 and was discharged in March 1864. Lowe was a Paymaster's Steward aboard the U.S.S. Penobscot. Lowe served on the Penobscot through almost all of 1862 and early into 1863. After spending two or three month ashore in the winter of 1863-64, he was reassigned to the U. S. Steamer Southfield, a pre-war ferry boat that was converted into a sidewheel steam gunboat. While on the Southfield, his position was that of Paymaster's Clerk. He was assigned to her until he left the service in March 1864-just one month before the Southfield was sunk by the Confederate Ram Albemarle in the Battle of Plymouth. This letter group consists of 80 letters, many of which are transcribed, mostly 4pp, most with original covers. Forty-three War-dated written by Henry Lowe; Two Pre-War written by Henry Lowe; Two Post War written by Henry Lowe; Six War-dated letters written to Henry by his brother; Eight letters written to Henry by his Father; Nine letters written to Henry by various writers, Six letters written by other to others; Four various documents. We will excerp many of the Henry Lowe war-date letters. (3.20.62) U. S. Gunboat Penobscot, "While there, twenty steamboats came in here and landed 16,000 soldiers and 5,000 mules. By tomorrow night, I think there will be 60,000 troops here and 15,000 mules. There is not less than 75 steamers here now. We had a hard storm last night ... Two drifted by us and went towards Sewell's Point. This morning we see three more that will fall in the Rebel's hands. They were loaded with stores for the army. (4.13.62) U. S. Gunboat Penobscot, York River, "We can see any quantity of Rebels & Rebel Batteries. There is one on Freeman's Point about two miles up the river, mounting about 30 guns. Ten of them is 10-inch Columbiads and they have as near as we can make out about 10,000 troops in and around this Battery. The encampments on the other side ar... General McClellan was on board the Flag Ship Thursday and he said it was not of any use for us to try to take any forts around here till we had some eight or ten gunboats… very extensive and I think they have a force of 10 or 15,000 troops. (5.27.62) U. S. Gunboat Penobscot, Below Wilmington, "On Friday afternoon the 17th, we received orders from Fort Monroe to go round to this and to attack a fort at the mouth of this inlet. The fort [Fort Fisher 1] mounts twenty-eight guns. I do not know the name of the fort because it has been built since the war broke out. ... Our first shell fell short of their fort. The second one burst over them. The third one dismounted one of their largest guns and laid eight or ten men flat. All of our shots except the first were very good ones.... (6.16.62) U.S.S. Gun Boat Penobscot, Off Fort Caswell, "I see by the New York Tribune of the 2nd that we get quite a compliment for opening the ball at Fort Fisher. They say Captain [John Mellen Brady] Clitz is the right man in the right place. They are right. The men like him first rate and will stay by him to the last moment. ... we see two Rebel steamers twice a day which come down, look at us, turn round and goes home to report what we are doing. (7.1.62) U. S. S. Gunboat Penobscot Off Cape Fear River, "We have burnt four schooners in less than four weeks. 1 This was the best thing we could do with them as they all run ashore to get out of our way. we have done the Rebels great damage for the last three weeks. We will soon run them off the track. .. (7.20.62) U. S. S. Gunboat Penobscot Off Fort Fisher, "I will send you a 25 cts. bill in this note. You must keep this too.... was taken out of one of the schooners we burnt. ..." (8.28.62) U. S. S. Gunboat Penobscot Off Fort Caswell, "We got out a reward of $150 for the deserters. I hope that they will be caught and that I shall have the pleasure of putting a musket ball in Lambert's heart for that is what he should have done to him. Anyone that will desert in such times as these should suffer death. All five of the deserters belonged to R. Island. The first time we was in Beaufort, a Frenchman that we had deserted. He was shot by the pickets at Newbern, just right for him ... When we was at Beaufort, the steamer State of Georgia took a prize at this place. She was a fine schooner of about 60 tons from Nassau, N. P. loaded with salt &c. The steamer Kate run in here about two weeks ago and she has run out before this. She has run the blockade six times. I think that we shall get her before long. ..." .. (July 27, 1862), U. S. S. Gunboat Penobscot, Off Fort Fisher, "I see by the New York Herald of July 15th a letter about the schooner we burnt at this place and at Little River, South Carolina. ... (10.3.62) U. S. S. Gunboat Penobscot, Off Shallot's Inlet, North Carolina, "Yesterday at 10 o'clock, one of the contrabands raised a sail down the coast. We slipped our cable and gave chase. As we neared the sail, she proved to be a schooner making the best of her way for the shore. ... We kept up the firing till we had fired eight shots. ... I am sure that if Capt. Clitz of the Penobscot gets a chance at her .. a man that will not be frightened. He has been in the Navy for 28 years and he understands how to attack a ship or fort. ..." (10.5.62) U. S. S. Gunboat Penobscot Off Wilmington, N. C., "The men of my rank have about $500 prize money coming to them. I have not got one red cent. ... The Kate which got in the other night must have been worth half million dollars and could we have captured her, my share of the prize money would have been $700 ..." (1.25.63) U. S. S. Gunboat Penobscot, Off New Inlet, North Carolina, "I have not received my commission as Master's Mate. When it comes, I think I shall not take it. I did not want to send for it. It was Capt. Clitz's doings. ... Last Tuesday the Genessee captured a prize. As it was quite rough, she couldn't send a boat to her so she brought her to anchor under her stern for the night. In the morn she had slipped and put for Topsail Inlet. The Mount Vernon saw her trying to get in so they put a few shot and shell in her and she went to bottom. Wednesday the Checorora captured a prize from Nassau. She was loaded with brandy & quinine. ... Friday the Cambridge captured a fine prize. She was from Nassau N. P. bound to Wilmington. We have a share in it. ... ...We learn by the way of three deserters that came off to the Cambridge that the Rebels on the morning of the 16th before light took the crew and officers as prisoners and that when we fired on the Columbia, there was about 40 Rebels on board. When they found that we was putting shot through her, they left for the shore. In their haste, 17 men was drowned in the surf. ..." (7.17.63) U. S. S. Miami Bound to Plymouth, North Carolina, "I did not think to write to you again (when I was in Newbern) till I arrived to the Southfield ..." (7.19.63) U. S. S. Southfield, Off Plymouth, North Carolina, "What pleased me the most when at Baltimore was to find so many good Union men. Most of them was the strongest Union men I had ever been with. I not only know them so by their talk but by their kindness to the poor wounded troops [from Gettysburg] that arrived at that City when I was there. Hundreds volunteered to go out to the battlefield and take care of the sick and wounded. I there saw a subscription list for the disabled fighting men-over $3,000 was on the list that was raised in one day. The amounts on the paper was from $5 to $500. Oh! how I wish I had a hundred dollars to give. ... I must now tell you about the Rebel prisoners that arrived there when I was in the City. I saw 4,853 come in. It was quite a sight to see them-some with shoes and some without. ..." (8.1.63) U. S. Steamer Southfield, Off Newbern, North Carolina, "Foster's Expedition has returned to this place. They brought back with them 60 fine horses, a large lot of cattle, and some 80 prisoners. ..." (Oct 1863) U. S. Steamer Southfield, Hatteras Inlet, North Carolina, "For the last ten days it has been blowing a tremendous breeze. ..."
Click on a thumbnail above to display a larger image below
Hold down the mouse button and slide side to side to see more thumbnails(if available).

Henry M. Lowe Letter Group of War-Dated Letters Written By Paymaster’s Steward Most Written Onboard the U.S.S. Penobscot -  Many Brown Water Locations

Click above for larger image.
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $4,500.00
Final prices include buyers premium.: $0.00
Estimate: $7,500 - $10,000
Auction closed on Sunday, January 21, 2024.
Email A Friend
Ask a Question
Have One To Sell

Auction Notepad


You may add/edit a note for this item or view the notepad:  

Submit    Delete     View all notepad items