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George T. Fleming, Life and Letters of Alexander Hays

Scarce Collection of Letters of a Heroic Pennsylvanian


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George T. Fleming, The Life and Letters of Alexander Hays is an extraordinarily scarce collection of letters from one of the most capable division commanders of the Army of the Potomac.

Hays, the Pittsburgh engineer turned military hero, commanded the defenders of Cemetery Ridge during Pickett’s charge, after which he tied captured rebel banners to his horse and dragged them in the dirt to the cheers of his troops.  His figure is immortalized in bronze on that legendary battlefield.

In May of 1864, Hays was killed at the battle of the Wilderness.

His letters are a thorough, almost daily account of his experience as a regimental, brigade and division commander.

Nevins and Robertson claim that this is “one of the largest collections of Civil War letters in print; this almost unknown book affords a splendid insight into the Army of the Potomac.” (Nevins, I, 89).

One illustrated plate partly loose; light shelf-wear; rear hinge starting; else very good.

Fleming, George Thornton, ed. & Hays, Gilbert Adams. LIFE AND LETTERS OF ALEXANDER HAYS: BREVET COLONEL UNITED STATES ARMY. BRIGADIER GENERAL AND BREVET MAJOR GENERAL UNITED STATES VOLUNTEERS. Pittsburgh: 1919. 1st edition, 708p., frontispiece, illustrated.