Historical Gifts Maybe


First Sergeant
Official Vendor
Jul 26, 2018
How did Albert Einstein communicate with President Roosevelt about the atomic bomb? How did the Queen of Hawaii protest America's annexation of the Islands?

Instead of learning about history from a book, we invite you to learn directly from history through replicas of the historic letters themselves. Read for yourself, in the original words and handwriting, what the people who shaped our history had to say about the events and topics of their times.

Our team of history buffs curate fascinating historic documents and letters from the best archives in the world and deliver our most interesting gems directly to your doorstep. Each document comes alive with an additional historical context document. Every two months we will explore a different theme from various angles using the letters and documents as our guides.


Britain Helps Confederate Navy (1865)
Oct 11, 2018

As the American Civil War was ending, U.S. Secretary of State wrote this letter in March of 1865 to the U.S. Ambassador to Great Britain Charles Francis Adams. Adams was a writer, politician, son of President John Quincy Adams, and grandson and biographer of President John Adams. Charles Francis Adams had also served two terms in the Massachusetts State Senate and had run unsuccessfully for vice-president in the 1848 election with former President Martin Van Buren on the Free Soil Party ticket, a short lived political party whose single purpose was to oppose the expansion of slavery into Western territories.

While Charles Francis Adams was serving as Minster to the United Kingdom under President Abraham Lincoln, Adams worked to keep Britain neutral in the American Civil war as Confederate diplomats where working to have Britain enter the war on their side, or at least officially recognize the Confederacy. Meanwhile, the British were providing safe harbor for Confederate ships.

Confederate States Ship (CSS) Shenandoah was an iron-framed, teak-planked, sailing ship with auxiliary steam power used by the Confederate Navy during the civil war to disrupt the Union economy. The CSS Shenandoah captured or sank thirty-eight Union merchant vessels, mostly whaling ships, around the world.
The ship finally surrendered on November 6, 1865, half a year after the end of the Civil War. The Shenandoah's flag was the last sovereign Confederate flag to fly and the last shot of the Civil War was fired from the Shenandoah at a whaling ship off the coast of the Aleutian Islands in Alaska.
After having destroyed 11 U.S. merchant ships near Cape Town, South Africa, the Shenandoah found safe harbor in Melbourne, Australia. Since both Cape Town and Melbourne were British ports, Secretary of State Seward told Ambassador Adams Britain's assistance of the Confederacy was a “new aggression of British subjects upon our national rights.”


I don't have any connection with this group but I thought some people on this site might be interested,

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Feb 14, 2012
Central Pennsylvania
It's a terrific idea, spreading the word about going back to then ( whenever that might be ). As comprehensive, well sourced and beautifully written as current work may be, nothing is better than being there.

Having said that, era sources aren't always subjective either. Reading all about how Sickles, for instance, won Gettysburg with no help from all those other useless generals, you'd be inclined to wonder why no one crowned him king.

Thanks for posting- I think! Another interesting side track today when things like work are being ignored.

Cavalry Charger

Jan 24, 2017
This letter is a real treasure to have in the annals of the history of the CW, and particularly in relation to the Shenandoah and her exploits. The fact that Seward relates not just the immediate responsibility of the British Government in having housed the Shenandoah originally, but her welcome and feting at far distant foreign ports under British rule enabling her to carry out her 'piracy', indicates a tense stand off between the American and British Government. To say that recent communications 'have exhausted the argument of the United States upon the subject' appears to indicate a more thorough response may be forthcoming.

Great share. Thanks @wbull1 . And definitely a 'gift'.