Joshua Lawrence Chamberlan: The Bowdoin College Site


J.F. Stafford to Gen. J.L. Chamberlain,
Farmington, N.H., October 6, 1880.

The decade of the 1880s witnessed a resurgence of popular interest in recalling the Civil War. Many towns installed Civil War monuments in their town squares and monuments began to be placed on battlefields. Soldiers who had fought found ready listeners on the lecture circuit. Chamberlain became a much sought after name for both his "Gettysburg" story and his "Appomattox" story. The Chamberlain Collection is full of invitations for him to speak all over the northeast, such as this invitation to speak in Farmington, N.H., from a former member of his 20th Maine regiment.

Farmington, N.H. Oct 6th 1880

Gen. J.L. Chamberlain

Dear Sir:

  Our people are [desireous] [desirous] of [haveing] [having] a course of first class lectures this winter – this being their first attempt at trying for a first class course. Being somewhat in doubt as to their ability to raise sufficient funds to pay for the same, they conclude it to be the part of prudence to first ascertain at what prices they can be procured – and then see if a sufficient number of course tickets can be sold

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to meet expenses. Among the lecturers most desired is yourself – and the gentlemen [haveing] [having] the matter in charge knowing me to be a member of your old 20th Reg – and being aware that I wrote you a like request last winter (at which time you were too much engaged with other matters to permit of coming) has requested me to address you again, and inquire if you are to be in the lecture field this winter – and if so to ask you ^ to name the lowest price at which you would come.

  He tells me your Battle of Gettysburg is the lecture most likely to be desired – nothing of the kind ever [haveing] [having] been delivered here. Our village

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of Farmington is situated on a branch of the Boston + Maine R.R. 18 miles above Dover N.H. and you could arrive here at about 11 AM and or 7-30 P.M. and return at 7 or 9 A.M. Permit me to say that it would be a matter of personal gratification should arrangements be made enabling the people of this place to see and hear you.

  Very Respectfully

J.F. Stafford

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Citation: George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College, Joshua L. Chamberlain Collection, M27.

Index Terms: Gettysburg; Little Round Top; Appomattox; Lecture; Speeches; Bowdoin College; Presidency; Stafford, J.F.; Boston; Maine; Dover; New Hampshire

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