Colonel John Thomas Pickett Confederate Seal Medallion, ALS to Mrs. Varina Anne Davis, second wife of Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederate States of America, presenting her with the medallion, 3 items total. 1st item: Confederate Seal Medallion, gilt on copper, 1862. Central image depicts George Washington on horseback, encircled by a ring of Southern agricultural crops, the outer ring reading "THE CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA / 22 FEBRUARY 1862 / DEO VINDICE". Housed under glass in a circular metal frame. Medallion – 4" dia. Framed – 4 1/4" dia. 2nd item: ALS. One page handwritten letter. From W. J. Pickett, relation of Colonel John Thomas Pickett to Mrs. Varina Anne Davis, Memphis, TN, dated November 21, 1873. Pickett explains how he came into the possession of the medallion (see above) and presents Mrs. Davis with one, writing "Respected Madame, Some weeks ago my relation Col John T Pickett of Washington City sent me a number of medals (a facsimile impre[s]sion of the great Seal of the Southern Confederacy, the original being…po[s]se[s]sion-to sell for the benefit of the church orphans Home. Some few were…for complimentary distribution-Among them one for you which I send herewith. My relation Col P., hopes you will kindly receive this medal as a memento of the sacred and "lost cause" with which Mr. Davis and yourself were so conspicuously connected. Very Respectfully Yours, W. J. Pickett It may be of interest for you to know that I have placed the medals for sale for The Church Home, at Clark & Co & Byrd's Jewelry Stores, and Wade Bookstores". Housed and secured by metal clasps under glass. 10 1/8" H x 8 1/8" W. 3rd item: Sterling silver hollow knitting needle or pen with embossed swirl patterns to the top. Unmarked but tests sterling. 5 1/4" L. All items third quarter 19th century. Biography: John Thomas Pickett (1820-1884) was educated as a lawyer at Transylvania University, KY. He was appointed to West Point in 1841. He resigned to accept the post as U.S. Council (West Indies (Turk's Island)). He became a General soldiering with Lajos (Lewis) Kossuth in the short lived Hungarian Revolution. Pickett joined the 1849 Round Island expedition, which he helped organize in New York. He served as Lieutenant Colonel and Chief officer with Col. Theodore O'Hara of the vessel Georgiana during the May 1850 expedition. (Caldwell, Lopez Expeditions, p. 59). After Battle of Cardenas Col. Pickett had a $25,000 reward for his head by Capt. Gen. of Cuba. He was indicted June 21, 1850 in New Orleans for his role in the 1850 Lopez Expedition. (Democratic Review, April 1852, 308). Pickett pledged to the 1854 Quitman expedition (New York Times, 6-22-1854-4). From 1853 to 1861 he served as U.S. Consul to Vera Cruz. When the "Southern War of Rebellion" broke out he was appointed the Confederate Commissioner to Mexico. Pickett served as General John Breckenridge's staff, asst. Adjt. General C.S.A. army. In 1863 he was Secretary of First Confederate Peace mission and from 1864-1865 he was Special envoy extraordinary to Mexico (arranged escape of CSA officials). Towards the end of 1865, John Thomas was selected as Santa Anna's chief of staff. During the later half of 1866 and 1867 Pickett was associated with a failed railroad project of the Louisiana Tehuantepec Company. It had failed because Mexico did not take the project seriously. Pickett was a lawyer in D.C. until end of life. (Adapted from https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/6041204/john-thomas-pickett). Note: According to a letter excerpt from William Earle to Quitman Marshall, Secretary of State, South Carolina, dated December 22, 1888, John T. Pickett had three copies of the seal of the Confederacy made: "At the time of the evacuation of Richmond when our army was trudging through the mud and fighting its way back to Appomatox [sic], the seal was overlooked in the hurry of packing and one who found it gave it to Col. John T. Pickett, late of this city, a true and devoted Confederate and since the time of the war he sent to England and had these copies made and gave three to me". CONDITION: 1st item: Overall good condition with tarnish to be expected from age. Previously hot glued to frame, traces of glue present to back of medallion. 2nd item: Overall good condition with areas of dampstaining, foxing spots, tears, largest 1 7/8" x 7/8", rendering some parts of the letter illegible. 3rd item: Overall good condition with minute dents near tip.
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