American civil war archive to lead January 16 sale in San Francisco

An archive of diaries and photographs pertaining to the American civil war is to auction at PBA Galleries in San Francisco on January 16.

The lot, valued at $20,000-25,000, will headline the Fine Americana auction - which features a range of artefacts from US history.

civil war archive PBA
The archive features portraits of the men of Woodworth's regiment

The archive was compiled by Lieutenant James Clinton Woodworth, who served in the 25th Regiment Massachusetts Volunteers between 1861 and 1865.

Consisting of six handwritten diaries, an album of portraits, paperwork and a footlocker, the collection offers an extraordinary insight into the lives of soldiers at the time - including a reaction to the news of Lincoln's assassination: "Fowler came into the house and read a telegram just rec'd that press. Lincoln was shot last night at Ford's Theater in Washington, and that Sec. Seward and his son had their throats cut!

"…The stores and public buildings are draped in morning this P.M. Everybody that I have seen feels very sad; I haven't felt like work at all to day."

A selection of 78 maps by Robert Morden are also offered, estimated at $7,000-10,000.

Published in 1688, this second edition book features maps of the known world - including one that depicts California as an island.

Robert Morden world map
The second edition features 16 maps not included in the first edition

In 2010, a first edition copy made $10,625 ($16,522) at Christie's.

We have a selection of books and manuscripts available to purchase here.

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