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1866 “Union Base Ball Club” Invitation to Gen. Montgomery Meigs

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1866 “Union Base Ball Club” Invitation to Gen. Montgomery Meigs

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This formal invitation to Maj. General Montgomery Meigs was advanced by the "Union Base Ball Club" whose identity appears prominently in the message’s pre-printed text. Meigs, as history esteems, may well have been our country’s most distinguished Quartermaster General. He quickly rose in the Lincoln Administration to command the movement of supplies for all the Union’s military forces in the Civil War. Following Lincoln’s assassination, Meigs continued in that administrative capacity through three succeeding presidencies.

Shortly after the Civil War’s conclusion, there emerged a semi-pro baseball team in the capital city, and we assume that these "Unions" enjoyed meaningful stature in Washington as they deemed themselves worthy of the general’s presence in one of their fund-raising socials. Spirited by the mirth and tranquility of a return of peace, baseball made quantum bounds in popularity throughout the land, as is echoed in this invitation. Specifically, it requests the participation of General Meigs to attend their sponsored "First Annual Hop" on February 16, 1866. (And we note that even in Washington society of the day, the term ‘hop’ was a universally accepted term meaning ‘dance.’) Interesting to note here is that the venerable officer at that point in history still had a deskful of emergencies in the afterwake of the war with military equipment yet littering all points of the American compass. (For that matter, Meigs later embarked on a three-year recuperative respite before returning to duty under President Andrew Johnson.) Whether he actually attended the function is unknown; there appears toward the lower left aspect of the invitation an indiscernible penciled notation which, we believe, simply acknowledged receipt of the gesture.

The invitation is a fold-over measuring about 4-1/2" x 7-1/4" (closed) and it’s printed only on the front. There are the expected mild compacting folds and the piece is about VG/EX.   

1866,Ball,Baseball,Equipment,Military,Presidential  Andrew Johnson

Auction End: 06-Oct-08  Post Views: 1725

300  Price; $0.00 – $1,000.00




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