American History

American History is a semi-annual Live Salesroom Auction featuring everything from 19th century photography, political campaign ephemera, historical textiles, items associated with slavery and abolition, Lincolniana, the Civil War, social history, books, manuscripts and autographs, to flags and historical relics. Online-Only American History auctions also occur throughout the year.

We are always accepting consignments for upcoming American History auctions.Click here for our online consignment form.

Department Director

Katie Horstman, Director
Specialist

Contact Information
Contact Katie at 513-871-1670 x236 or email historic@cowans.com

Katie Horstman is a graduate of The University of Cincinnati with a Masters degree in Art History, where she explored the work of New York photographer, John Oliver Bowman. Working closely with Wes Cowan, Katie has been successfully leading the American History department for the past five years.

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<i>Manners and Customs of Various Nations</i>, Plus
Lot # 332 - Manners and Customs of Various Nations, Plus
Depping, J.B. Evening Entertainments; or Delineations of the Manners and Customs of Various Nations, Interspersed with Geographical Notices, Historical and Biographical Anecdotes and Descriptions in Natural History. Philadelphia: David Hogan, 1812. 12mo, originally 3/4 leather over marbled paper, spine label with gilt, 424pp. 

Plus Van Waters, George. Poetical Geography, Designed to Accompany Outline Maps or School Atlases. To Which are Added the Rules of Arithmetic in Rhyme. Cincinnati, Louisville, Philadelphia, Hartford, New York, and Boston, (presumably by the author),1858. 8vo, half-leather or printed paper boards, 96pp.
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German WWII SA Dagger by Eickhorn
Lot # 216 - German WWII SA Dagger by Eickhorn
8.5" blade marked Alles fur Deutchland ("Everything for Germany") and maker Eickhorn/Solingen on opposite side. 
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<i>Topographical Map of Grafton County, New-Hampshire</i>, 1860
Lot # 378 - Topographical Map of Grafton County, New-Hampshire, 1860
Walling, Henry F. Topographical Map of Grafton County New-Hampshire. New York: Smith Mason & Co., 1860. Approx. 60 x 60 in. Linen backed, varnished. Relief shown by hachures.

Vignettes include: Pemigewasset House, Plymouth; Store and Residence of Col. Jesse Ladd, Holderness; Dr. Vail’s Water Cure Institute, Hill; Dartmouth College; Tilden Female Seminary; N.H. Medical College; Old Man of the Mountain; The Flume, Franconia Notch; Exchange Hotel, Haverhill; Academy and Courthouse, Plymouth; Tontine Building, Hanover; Oxford Academy and Boarding House; Profile House, Franconia Mts.; Residence of J.S. Ryan, Esq. Plymouth; County Building and Courthouse, Haverhill; and Flume House, Franconia Mountains.

Inserts include: Plymouth; Sugar Hill, Lisbon; Hebron; Alexandria; Hill Village; Rumney; Bristol; Danbury; Holderness Village; Lisbon Village; Bethlehem; Bath, Lower Village; Campton Village; Swift Water Village; Littleton; Orford; Piermont; Monroe; East Enfield; North Haverhill; Wentworth; Lyme Plain; Haverhill; Lebanon; Enfield; East Lyme; Hanover; West Lebanon; Factory Village; Warren Village; East Lebanon; East Canaan; Enfield Center; East Grafton; Plus Dartmouth College Directory, Table of Distances, Statistics.
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Large Group of Confederate Veterans Imprints, Including <i>Stonewall Jackson Calendar, 1912</i>
Lot # 111 - Large Group of Confederate Veterans Imprints, Including Stonewall Jackson Calendar, 1912
Lot includes:

Stonewall Jackson Calendar 1912.  Composed of five 6.5 x 11 in. chromolithographed cards, four of them containing three months and a quote or image relating to Jackson. Condition: January-March calendars have been pasted over with a Dec. 1924 calendar.

Songs of the Confederacy and Plantation Melodies. Cincinnati: Geo. B. Jennings Co., 1901. Chromolithographed cover, 46pp, containing music and lyrics for 20 songs.

Robert E. Lee; Soldier, Patriot, Educator. Published for the Lee Memorial Fund and dedicated to the Daughters of the Confederacy. 7.25 x 10 in., 23pp.

Stonewall Jackson: A Character Sketch, and J.E.B. Stuart: A Character Sketch.  Both by H.H. Smith, Blackstone, Virginia, 3.5 x 6 in., 48pp and 32pp.

The Southern Magazine: Vol. 1, No. 3 (June 1934), Vol. 1, No. 8 (Dec. 1934), Vol. 3, No. 3 (Jan. 1937), and Vol. 4, No. 4 (May 1938). 

Three pamphlets by Landon C. Bell, all signed by the author: The Lincoln Myths are Passing--But Slowly / Bowers' Tragic Era (1 copy) and Robert E. Lee, An Address by Landon C. Bell (2 copies). 6 x 9 in., 16-27pp, copyright 1929-1930.

1908 UDC Atlanta Chapter souvenir, 2.5 x 4 in., designed as a CSA first national flag and with fold-out images of sights around Atlanta.

Certificate acknowledging a $1 contribution to the Jefferson Davis Monument at Fairview, Kentucky.

Lyrics of the Gray; For Southern Hearts and Southern Homes. By T.C. Harbaugh. 56pp.

The United Daughters of the Confederacy Magazine: Vol. 14, Nos. 8 & 9 (Aug. & Sept. 1951).

Confederate Veteran: Vol. 23, No. 1 (Jan. 1915), Vol. 27, No. 11 (Nov. 1919), Vol 33, Nos. 4 & 5 (April & May 1925), Vol 39, No. 12 (Dec. 1931).

Reunion Souvenir Historical Issue of the Dixie Magazine, printed for the 36th UCV Annual Reunion, held in Birmingham in 1926.

Program for The Common Glory; A Symphonic Drama by Paul Green, Matoaka Lake Amphitheatre, Williamsburg, Virginia, Fourth Season, 1950. 48pp.

Plus other miscellaneous ephemera.
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<i>Hibbard & Spencer Hardware Store</i>, Chicago, Stereoview
Lot # 224 - Hibbard & Spencer Hardware Store, Chicago, Stereoview
Arch-top albumen views on a standard size yellow mount imprinted on recto Copelin & Hine, Photogrpahers, Chicago, Ill./Stereoscopic Views of Chicago, Before and After the Fire beside images and titled Hubbard & Spencer, Hardware at l.r., with Hubbard and Spencer's full card imprinted advertisement on verso.
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Presentation of Silver Tea Service to Cody, in London, England, Plus the Mock TE Ranch, Three Photographs
Lot # 20 - Presentation of Silver Tea Service to Cody, in London, England, Plus the Mock TE Ranch, Three Photographs
Lot of 3 photographs strung together vertically with ribbon, each a roughly 9 x 11 in. silver gelatin print on a 14 x 18 in. imprinted mount of photographer Jas. E. Hunt of North Kensington, West London, with the imprinted titles: Buffalo Bill's Wild West Company's Presentation to their Chief on his Birthday at Olympia, London, Feb 26, 1903.; Entrance to Col. Cody's TE Ranch / Olympia, London, 1903.; and Col. Cody's Private Office in TE Ranch / Olympia, London, 1903.
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Abraham Lincoln, Group of Five Keystone Stereoviews
Lot # 234 - Abraham Lincoln, Group of Five Keystone Stereoviews
Lot of 5 Abraham Lincoln-related stereoviews by Keystone View Co., including a view of the cabin in which Lincoln was born, three portraits and a painting of Lincoln and his cabinet.  Only the cabin view actually has 3-D effect, as the latter four are reproductions of non-stereoscopic works.
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[Political Americana] Fine Lot of Democratic Electoral Tickets, Including Andrew Jackson Illustrated Ticket 
Lot # 203 - [Political Americana] Fine Lot of Democratic Electoral Tickets, Including Andrew Jackson Illustrated Ticket 
Lot of 4, including: an 1832 Ohio Democratic ticket (Jackson/Van Buren) featuring a broom; an 1852 Illinois Fillmore Ticket, although he was not the nominee of a party that year; an 1856 Illinois Democratic ticket (Buchanan/Breckinridge); and an 1876 Menard County, Illinois, Democratic ticket (Tilden/Hendricks) featuring a rooster. The 1852 Illinois ticket includes Abraham Lincoln's close friend and presidential bodyguard Ward Hill Lamon as the nominee for state's attorney, and the 1852 and 1856 tickets include Lionel P. Lacey as the nominee for representative, who collaborated with Lincoln in several legal cases in the 1850s. Largest 3" x 12.5".
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Colonel Strong Vincent, KIA Gettysburg, CDV
Lot # 272 - Colonel Strong Vincent, KIA Gettysburg, CDV
Carte bears imprint on mount recto and verso of Dolph Bros., Erie, PA, the city from which the 83rd Pennsylvania was raised. A fine view of Colonel Strong Vincent (1837-1863) of the 83rd PA. Plucked by fate and General Warren to the summit of Little Round Top just in the nick of time to oppose a surging Confederate attack, Vincent was mortally wounded while rallying the hard-pressed 16th Michigan, and for eternity became a Gettysburg icon. Vincent died in a field hospital on July 7 and his promotion to Brigadier General was posthumous.
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John Philip Sousa Signed Cabinet Photograph
Lot # 193 - John Philip Sousa Signed Cabinet Photograph
An 1893 silver gelatin cabinet photograph of composer John Philip Sousa in uniform, published by F.W. Guerin of St. Louis, and inscribed in pencil on verso To. Mrs. Emily Howard / With the best wishes of John Philip Sousa / St. Louis Oct 7 1893.  Lot includes photograph and photocopies of letters signed by Sousa.  John Philip Sousa (1854-1932) was the American composer and conductor known for his patriotic and military marches. 
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UCV, Confederate First National Parade Flag
Lot # 109 - UCV, Confederate First National Parade Flag
Gauze, 16.5 x 11.5 in., printed United Confederate Veterans, First National Confederate parade flag on stick, which is 32 in. long with finial. 1875-1885. This is a very early UCV flag and is therefore a rare example.
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Will Soule Photographs of American Indians at Ft. Sill
Lot # 358 - Will Soule Photographs of American Indians at Ft. Sill
Lot of 3 albumen photographs taken by Will Soule at Ft. Sill, UT, ca 1870, including the following: portrait of Sitting-in-the-Saddle, Son of Lone Wolf, although misidentified on verso as Lone Wolf, Present Chief of Kiowas, 4 x 6 in.; portrait of Yellow Bear, Arapahoe Chief, as identified on verso, 4 x 6 in.; and a cabinet card portrait of an unidentified American Indian, on cream-colored mount, 4.25 x 6.5 in.  
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Clock, Watchmaker, Silversmith <i>Wm. Whitcroft</i>, Annapolis, Maryland Nameplate
Lot # 226 - Clock, Watchmaker, Silversmith Wm. Whitcroft, Annapolis, Maryland Nameplate
2.5" diam. engraved brass nameplate from a grandfather clock reading Wm. Whitcroft / Annapoles. However the "i" and "e" have been transposed, as the owner was actually William Whitcroft of Annapolis, Maryland, a metal smith whose name appears in several records and publications regarding colonial and revolutionary Annapolis. He is referenced as a clock and watchmaker, silversmith, and gunsmith and appears to be the most important metalsmith/metal engineer in Maryland around the time of the American Revolution. He is cited in Whisker's Arms Makers of Colonial America as promising to deliver every week for two years 50 good substantial proved Musquets 3 1/2 feet long in the Barrel and of three Quarters of an Inch in the Bore starting in October 1775, and was given an interest-free loan in 1776 to open a "rolling, sheeting, and slitting mill" within 20 miles of Baltimore. Further sources and information accompanying the piece refer to Whetworth as a skilled artisan in the production of watches, clocks, and fine table silver before and after devoting his expertise to the war cause.
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Gouverneur Morris LS, 1783
Lot # 215 - Gouverneur Morris LS, 1783
Gouverneur Morris (1752-1816).  U.S. Founding Father, and one of the primary authors of the U.S. Constitution.  LS, 9.25 x 7.25 in., laid paper, October 20, 1783, Philadelphia, to Governor of New York George Clinton, introducing and recommending the bearer of the letter, a wealthy immigrant from Ireland named only as Mr. Noble, who comes strongly recommended to this country and with a design to spend his Life in it.  A nice piece directed from one Founding Father to another.  Accompanied by a previous auction clipping stating that Mr. Noble also sought and received a letter of recommendation from Robert Morris regarding a plan to bring Irish settlers to America.
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<i>Custer's Old Command</i> Reunion, Canandaigua, New York, 1907, Pamphlet & Original Mailing Envelope
Lot # 421 - Custer's Old Command Reunion, Canandaigua, New York, 1907, Pamphlet & Original Mailing Envelope
12mo, 8pp pamphlet for the Reunion of Gen. Geo. A. Custer's Command at Canandaigua, N.Y., August 21 and 22, 1907.  Accompanied by the original mailing envelope.
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Argentine Model 1891 Bolt Action Rifle
Lot # 77 - Argentine Model 1891 Bolt Action Rifle
7.65 cal., 22" barrel, S/N C7228. Sporterized, missing parts.
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Lincoln Wide Awake Marcher, Possibly from Hartford, Rare CDV
Lot # 149 - Lincoln Wide Awake Marcher, Possibly from Hartford, Rare CDV
Albumen cdv of a Lincoln Wide Awake marcher wearing early-style Wide Awake regalia, indicating that this gentleman could very well be an original Hartford Wide Awake. CDV lacks studio imprint. Carte-de-visite images of parade marchers from 1860 to 1880 are much rarer than tintypes and are at least as rare as ambrotypes from 1860 through 1864. This is the first cdv of a Wide Awake that Cowan's has had the opportunity to offer at auction.
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[Western US - Kansas & Wyoming] Rare Stereoviews of Kansas and Montana Cowboys
Lot # 242 - [Western US - Kansas & Wyoming] Rare Stereoviews of Kansas and Montana Cowboys
Lot of 2. Includes the following:

Cabinet sized orange mount with handstamp of M(errit).D(ana). Houghton, Rawlins, Wyoming on verso. A fine view of a branding scene, with one cowboy mounted, holding a roped steer steady while another cowboy applies the iron.  Mautz lists Houghton as active in Rawlins between 1880-84.  A scarce Wyoming maker, and a scarce cowboy view.

Regular sized orange mount with imprint of J.G. Evans Western Stereoscopic Views, Muscatine, Iowa, and Arkansas Valley B Series on recto, with an extensive list of negatives -- all taken in and around Witchita, Kansas printed on verso.  Though not identified in the verso list, this view shows a hard-boiled Kansan on horseback.  He wear high riding boots and worn clothing and felt hat.  A rare image.
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[American Indian-Carbutt] Two Pawnee Indian Stereoviews
Lot # 182 - [American Indian-Carbutt] Two Pawnee Indian Stereoviews
Lot of 2 of Pawnee Indians by J. Carbutt from the "Union Pacific Rail Road Excursion to the 100th Meridian, October 1866." #202 "Camp of Pawnee Indians on the Platte Valley" showing them riding about in full feather by a Teepee, and #203 "Group of mounted Pawnee Warriors" showing the lined up on horseback by a Teepee. Yellow mounts with "Ed. Burchard Collection" imprint on versos.
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<i>A Map of the British and French Settlements in North America</i>, 1755
Lot # 246 - A Map of the British and French Settlements in North America, 1755
Hinton, John. A Map of the British and French Settlements in North America, 1755. Universal Magazine. 15 x 11 in. (sight), in bird's-eye maple frame, 20 x 15 in. Old green coloring that has browned, as is typical. Inset of Fort Frederick at Crown Point built by the French 1731.

The map illustrates tensions between two world powers, Britain and France in North America. It was issued just before the British formally declared war against France in 1756, although fighting had been going on since at least May 1754 (and some would argue even as early as 1749 with Father Le Loutre's War in Acadia). The map depicts various settlements and military forts in the disputed territory of the Allegheny Mountains.

French claims are denoted by dotted lines. Georgia is shown as a strip from the Atlantic to the Western edge of the map (about the 100th meridian), bisecting the northern and southern parts of South Carolina (French claim). Bounds of Virginia & New England 1606 runs north of the Ohio River and all the way to the 100th meridian. Bounds of Hudson's Bay by the Treaty of Utrecht snakes between the Great Lakes and Hudson's Bay. Many Indian territories are noted, partially explaining alliances of various native groups with one side or the other.
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