Paw Paw, Michigan: 1862. Item #2540
7 7/8” x 4 7/8”. Single sheet, folded, handwritten on all four pages, approximately 600 words. In original transmittal envelope, apparently hand delivered by a Lieutenant Burns. Letter near fine: minimal wear and old folds; envelope very good with moderate wear. A letter from a prominent Paw Paw entrepreneur, T. L. Stevens, to a man who may have been involved in the capture of Jefferson Davis, R. Mortimer Buck. At the time, Stevens owned a general store in Paw Paw with Alonzo Sherman. He was an early settler of Van Buren county, having arrived in Paw Paw in 1836. He was later the president of the First National Bank in Niles. Stevens wrote to Buck on September 3, 1862 soon after Buck enlisted in Lafayette, Michigan, on August 6, 1862. Apparently, Buck wrote Stevens three days after his unit was mustered in, seeking a hat, vest and pants. Stevens gave him an update on their creation and delivery and congratulated Buck on his appointment as first sergeant. Considering what lay in store for Buck and his fellow soldiers, Stevens wrote some prescient words, “you will undoubtedly travel over more rough and rugged paths than as yet has ever fell to your lot. Face to face you will meet a deadly foe arms to destroy the best government that the sun ever shone upon. Should such be the case I hope and trust you and all your comrades will conduct yourselves as becomes a good soldier. Never flinch from duty and never go beyond what right and Justice demands. Never trample upon a fallen foe. ” The storied Michigan Fourth Cavalry was known for having captured Jefferson Davis in May of 1865. According to a short biography of Buck's in a history of Paw Paw, locally he was considered as one of the people directly responsible for Davis' capture but when the commanding officer, Colonel Pritchard, wrote his account of the capture, Buck was not mentioned. This item is offered by Langdon Manor Books, LLC, antiquarian booksellers. Please do not hesitate to contact us for additional information and/or photos and we will respond promptly. We package our items carefully, ship daily, and have a no hassle returns policy--your satisfaction is guaranteed. We are members of the Antiquarian Booksellers' Association of America (ABAA) , the International League of Antiquarian Booksllers (ILAB) and the Independent Online Booksellers Association (IOBA) and adhere to their rules of ethics.