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Autograph, General Thomas W. Sweeny

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Autograph, General Thomas W. Sweeny (Image1)
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Your Price: $ 250.00
Item Number: Auto5220
 

 



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He lost his right arm at the battle of Churubusco in 1848 during the Mexican War

Severely wounded and carried from the field at the Battle of Wilson's Creek, Mo. in 1861

Wounded in the Battle of Fort Donelson, Tennessee

"Our best generals I consider to be Joseph E. Johnston, W.T. Sherman, and Phil Sheridan."


(1820-92) He was born in County Cork, Ireland on Christmas Day in 1820, and came to America at the age of 12. Interested in the militia, he joined the "Independent Tompkins Blues" which later were called the "Baxter Blues" In 1846, Sweeny enlisted as a second lieutenant in the 2nd New York Volunteers, and fought under General Winfield Scott in the Mexican War. He was wounded in the groin at the Battle of Cerro Gordo, and his right arm was so badly shattered at the Battle of Churubusco that it had to be amputated. For his heroic actions, his fellow soldiers nicknamed him "Fighting Tom." Despite this usually career ending wound, he continued serving with his regiment until the outbreak of the Civil War, but prior to the commencement of hostilities between the states, Sweeny fought in the Yuma War, 185053, seeing action in several engagements against native American Indians. Sweeny was in command of the very important St. Louis, arsenal, and in reply to the efforts of Confederate sympathizers to induce him to surrender the post, he declared that he would blow it up before ever surrendering it. He took part in the capture of Camp Jackson, Mo., in May 1861, and later assisted in organizing the "Home Guard," and was chosen as their brigadier general. Sweeny was sent with General Franz Sigel to Carthage, Mo., and at Wilson's Creek he was wounded and carried from the field. He served at Fort Donelson, and at the Battle of Shiloh he commanded a brigade of General W.H.L. Wallace's division, which sustained 1,247 casualties with Sweeny numbered among the wounded. He successfully defended a gap in the Union line, and was shot twice in his only remaining arm and once in one of his legs. Sweeny stayed on the field until the close of the fight, gaining much admiration of the entire army. At the battle of Corinth in October 1862, he succeeded to brigade command after the death of General P.A. Hackleman. He spent most of 1863 on duty in Tennessee and Mississippi and later commanded the 2nd division in the 16th Corps, which he led in the Atlanta campaign. At the Battle of Atlanta, Sweeny's division intercepted General John Bell Hood's flank attack, and Sweeny got into a serious fist fight with his corps commander, General Grenville M. Dodge, when Dodge broke protocol and personally directed one of Sweeny's brigades during the fight. Sweeny received a court martial for these actions but was acquitted. He mustered out of the volunteer army in August 1865. In 1866, he commanded the ill fated Fenian invasion of Canada, after which he was arrested for breaking neutrality laws between the United States and Britain, but was soon released. General Sweeny retired to Astoria, Long Island, New York, and died there on April 10, 1892. He is buried in Greenwood Cemetery in Brooklyn.

Autograph Letter Signed: 5 x 8, 2 pages in ink.

35 W 125th St., New York City
June 22d, 1886

Mr. Edgar F. Gladwin
Brooklyn, N.Y.

Dear Sir,

In order to comply with the request contained in your letter of the 15th inst. it would take more time than I can devote to the subject at present as I am about to move into the country with my family in a few days, Besides I am not sufficiently acquainted with the military history of the Russian and Austrian generals now living to form a correct estimate of their respective merits. Without doubt Von Moltke is the ablest general now living possessing as he does the qualities of strategist and grand tactician. Russia lost her best general Skobelev a few years ago, and next to Von Moltke, Germany lost her ablest generals in the Red Prince and Marshal Manteufel. England has no great generals living, but Sir Frederick Roberts commander in chief in India is decidedly her best. Our best generals I consider to be Joseph E. Johnston, W.T. Sherman, and Phil Sheridan. Regretting that I cannot give you a more elaborate and satisfactory opinion on the subject, I am, dear sir,

Yours respectfully,
T.W. Sweeny
Brig. Genl. U.S.A.

Very neatly written, and in excellent condition. Very interesting military related content even mentioning three of the most famous generals that fought in the Civil War, two Union and one Confederate, all former United States Army officers, that he considers to be "our best generals." Extremely desirable Union general's autograph.



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