One of General Grant’s Colonels Requests An Autograph – SOLD

This note signed by President Grant’s Son, (later MGen.) Fredrick Dent Grant, to Colonel Robert Lewan Orr, 61st PA Vols and recipient of the Medal of Honor.

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Colonel Robert Levan Orr, commanded the 61st Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry in U.S. Grant’s Army of the Potomac during the Civil War.  After hearing of the passing of his former commander, and President, Orr writes to Grant’s son, Fredrick Dent Grant, requesting an autograph to which he had been promised.  Fredrick Dent Grant complies with Orr’s wishes on Oct. 18th, 1885 from New York City with said autograph and this small mourning card with a note signed by the President’s son, “Col R.L. Orr.   In fulfilling of my promise I send you the enclosed autograph of my Father, Resl’y,  F.D. Grant.   N.Y. Oct. 18th 1885.”

It had been only a few days that the ex-president has completed his memoirs that he died on July 23, 1885.  His son Fredrick had taken a leave of absence from the Army to assist his father in researching and fact finding the necessary details needed for the literary work, that would bring much need help to the financially strapped Grant family.

Fredrick Dent Grant (1850- 1912), Graduated USMA Class of 1871, commissioned a 2nd Lt. in the 4th Cavalry, and later appointed to be Aide de Camp to General William T. Sherman;  In 1873 promoted to Lt. Col and served on the staff of General Phil Sheridan.  He accompanies Lt. Col G.A. Custer on the Yellowstone Expedition in 1874. In 1877 Grant takes a leave of absence to accompany his father on a trip to Europe, rejoining the army two year later in the field during the Bannock War.  In 1881, an ailing father needs his son to help with his memoirs, and he leaves the army once again.  When the Spanish America War began, Grant became the colonel of the 14th New York Regiment, and later in the Philippines, he is promoted in the regular army to brigadier general. In 1906, Grant received his last promotion, that of major general commanding the Department of the East at Fort Jay, Governor’s Island, New York.  He died in April of 1912 at Fort Jay, the second most senior officer in the American Army at that time.

Robert Lewan Orr  (1836-1894)  Born in Philadelphia.  Entered service on Sept 2, 1861 as a captain in the 61st PA Vols, He rose to the rank of full colonel on May of 1965, but took command of the 61st PA when his colonel was fell mortally wounded at the Battle of Five Forks, Va on April 2, 1865.  After two of the regiments color-sergeants had been shot down, Orr picked up the colors and carried it at the head of the regiment while attacking the enemy positions.  He was awarded the Medal of Honor in 1892.

A small card with great historical associations.

2.5 x 4 inches.  Fine condition.


Additional information

Weight .75 lbs