Memoirs of General W. T. Sherman
Hard Cover. New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1875. First Edition. Very Good.
Two volumes. First edition, first printing. Presentation copy; both volumes inscribed by William Henry Seward Jr. (son of former US Secretary of State) on front free endpapers: "Mrs. Alice Paris Goodrich / From Col. A. H. Seward's / brother W. H. Seward / Oct 19 1876." Publisher's original blue cloth, ruled in blind, titles in gilt; with large military map folded at back of Vol. 2 titled "Military Map showing the marches of the United States Forces under command of Maj. Genl. W. T. Sherman U.S.A. during the years 1863, 1864, 1865," drawn by Captain William Kossak and John B. Muller. Very good set, with some toning to spines, bright gilt, mild wear to corners, some fraying to cloth at spine ends, and a couple of small closed tears to Vol. 2 map pouch; map very good, with a closed tear to top left along fold crease, some small splits at fold creases, and light toning at fold creases. Overall, a handsome set with an excellent association. In this memoir, Sherman reflects on nearly twenty years of his life, from 1846 to the end of the Civil War in 1865. After suffering an early setback in the Civil War at the First Battle of Bull Run, Sherman went on to have a number of brilliant successes, and rose up the ranks with his close friend, Ulysses S. Grant. Sherman is perhaps best remembered for his March to the Sea, a devastating 1964-65 campaign in which he carried out a scorched earth policy through Georgia. The campaign is often cited as an early example of modern warfare. This copy is inscribed by William Henry Seward Jr., the youngest son of the famous statesman who served as Secretary of State under Abraham Lincoln and Andrew Johnson (1861-1869), and negotiated for the Alaska Purchase, a deal that many at the time dubbed "Seward's Folly" because of the high price that the US paid for the territory. Originally a banker, W. H. Seward Jr. joined the Union Army in 1962. He fought in notable battles like the Battle of Cold Harbor and the Battle of Monocacy, and was promoted to brigadier general on September 13, 1864. Seward Jr.'s brother, August Henry Seward, also achieved distinction in the war, attaining the rank of brevet colonel. Interestingly, John Wilkes Booth's assassination of Lincoln was part of a larger coordinated attack that included the Seward family. On the same night that Booth went to Ford's theater, his co-conspirator Lewis Powell went to the home of then-Secretary of State William Henry Seward. The attack on Seward failed, though he and his son Augustus sustained serious knife injuries.