This grouping belonged to Brevet Colonel William B. Keeler, 35th Iowa Infantry.
This is an impressive grouping consisting of an Army of the Cumberland badge, signed certificate by Gen. Phil. Sheridan, and three other veteran membership certificates for Brevet Colonel William Betts Keeler of the 35th Iowa Volunteer Infantry.
- Gold Army of the Cumberland badge, with original Civil War era ribbon. Solid planchet type without markings, “T” bar pin. Pin brooch has stamped “Army Of The Cumberland.” 4.5 inches high. Very good condition.
- Certificate, “Society Of The Army of the Cumberland, to Keeler, signed by “P.H. Sheridan, Lt. Gen’l.”, President, and “John W. Steele,” Secretary. The certificate was never dated. A highly illustrated document with many vignettes of generals, Civil War scenes. Made of Vellum, and in very good condition. 13 x 16 inches approximately.
- Appointment as Aide de Camp of the Department of Illinois, 26 October, 1891. 16 x 20 inches approx.
- Appointment as Aide de Camp of the G.A.R. dated Indianapolis, 26 March, 1896. 16 x 24 inches approximately.
- Appointment as Aide de Camp of the Department of Illinois, dated Omaha, Neb., 7 Marc, 1897. 16 x 24 inches approx.
All of the G.A.R. appointments are signed by various officer of the G.A.R., of course all Civil War veterans. Condition is very good, with the only issue to all is the roughness along around the edges, having been rolled most likely for their entire existence.
I see no need to give biographical information on General Phil Sheridan, being well known, but John Whedon Steele bears mention. This brief account is drawn from on line data which will be included with this lot. Steele enlisted as a 1st lieutenant of the 41st Ohio Infantry on Sept. 16, 1861 at Oberlin, OH. He was mustered into company ‘H.” He attained the rank of captain, and was discharged for promotion, becoming an Aide-de-Camp of U.S. Volunteers. That promotion was to the rank of major on Nov. 7, 1864. He received a brevet Lt. colonel’s commission on 1865 “for conspicuous gallantry in the series of battles fought in the Red River Campaign of Gen. Banks, and in the late operations before Spanish Fort.”
Whedon was also awarded the Medal of Honor. He was awarded the MOH as a Major and Aide-de-Camp for action on November 29, 1864 at Spring Hill, Tennessee. His citation reads “During the night attack of the enemy upon the wagon and ammunition train of this officer’s corps, he gathered up a force of stragglers and others, assumed command of it, though himself a staff officer, and attacked and dispersed the enemy’s forces, thus saving the train.”
Apparently Colonel Keeler’s grouping was part of a larger lot that hit auction several years ago. I purchased this lot from Jack Buchart, a well known dealer of Civil War and other military medals and orders.