1859-Dated “Frank P. Blair Jr.” Autograph Letter Signed
FRANCIS PRESTON BLAIR JR. (1821-1874), American Politician as Horatio Seymour’s Vice-Presidential Candidate, and Civil War General, personal friend of Abraham Lincoln.
November 17, 1859-Dated Autograph Letter Signed, “Frank P. Blair Jr.” 1 page, measuring 5” x 7.75”, Octavo, Choice Very Fine. Written from St. Louis to David H. Barnes, Blair very wryly accepts the man’s offer to introduce him into “high company” which he seems may be a mistake on his friend’s part. Light tone bar at top, else very nice. Very scarce.
Francis Preston Blair, Jr. (1821 – 1875). American politician and soldier, as well as personal friend of Abraham Lincoln. He represented Missouri in both the House of Representatives and the Senate, and was active in preventing that neutral state from being absorbed into the Confederacy in the Civil War.
After recruiting a Unionist home guard, Blair helped the new local military commander Nathaniel Lyon to move weapons from the St. Louis arsenal to safety in Illinois (Camp Jackson Affair), breaking an informal truce with the Confederates. This set the scene for continuing guerrilla activity by outraged pro-Slavery elements.
In 1862, Blair joined the Missouri Volunteers, being promoted Major General, commanding a division at Vicksburg, and ending the war as a corps commander under Sherman. In 1868, he was Horatio Seymour’s Vice-presidential Candidate, but his dramatic speeches about the dangers of Black Emancipation were believed by some to have cost the Democrats the election.