Pickett Pickett, special agent of the Virginia Militia 1874/1875


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Jul 7, 2015
Sallie Pickett, a very determined lady.

I wasn’t sure if It was a well known that Pickett’s had a role as an agent of the Virginia Militia. I think most people are aware that following the war Pickett made a career working with insurance and even though the actual details of some of his Insurance work Is quite mundane Pickett did managed to use his vast military experience In helping to reshape and rearm the Virginia militia.

The reason that some people wouldn’t be aware of his work with the militia is probably due to the fact that he ‘pickett’ worked as an agent for free, he never asked for any payment Or recognition for his work because he apparently had a serious interest in making sure that the militia was as efficient and as well supplied as it could be.

In his role as agent, Pickett set up a number of deals for the militia. He set about securing ordinance and tents for the militia which amounted to approximately $30.000, a part of the deal included the exchange of 2,307 Colt army pistols which it was alleged that Pickett had Previously secured from the United States Government (I can’t help but wonder how Pickett managed to secure such a large amount of Colt Pistols.) During the exchange, Pickett also managed to secure 150 tents which was far more than the militia needed or should have been given, he also made a succesful claim for ($ 1.692.25) for a gentleman called Frazier.

Here’s the interesting bit..Well, I think its interesting.

Pickett’s work with the militia was highlighted by his wife, Sallie. E. Pickett, she very shrewdly made a claim against the Richmond Finance Committee for non payment of wages despite the fact that Pickett had clearly stated that he would work as a special agent on behalf of the militia for free.

Initially the Richmond finance committee didn’t feel that Sallie’s claim could be upheld because Pickett had done the work for free and as such no payment could be made. Of course, Sallie didn’t let the matter go, she again made a second claim and the finance committee finally agreed that Picket should have been paid, they sent Sallie a payment of $3.000 thats ($65.000 in todays money) for the services and expenses of her late husband.

I mentioned earlier that this was the interesting bit, it turns out that the second Committee had a very influential senator by the name of Frazier (the same Frazier that Pickett had managed to secure a healthy payment for). Frazier moved the bill (HB248) to the very top of the finance commitee’s list of priorities, Sallie Pickett also had support from another influential member on the Committee called ‘Senator Richard R Farr‘, he was a former member of Mosby’s Rangers, I think its worth remembering that John Mosby wasn’t in the habit of praising George E Pickett so I was kind of surprised that a former member of Mosby’s rangers would support a claim from Sallie Picket. Perhaps Mosby and Pickett just had a clash of the Ego’s, Anyhow, it seems to me that Pickett genuinely cared for the volunteers, he obviously manipulated the system to get the best that he could for the militia. I’m hoping that those who see Pickett as a bit of a failure will realise that there’s far more to this man than we realise, maybe he wasn’t the greatest leader of men but he was one hell of an insurance salesman.