Welcome to Iron Horse Military Antiques. We are Illinois-based buyers and sellers of nineteenth-century documents, letters, images, and militaria, specializing in the American Civil War. If you have questions about items listed on our site, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Do you have an item to sell? We offer cash or can sell your item on consignment. Our team is also available for appraisals. Contact email@example.com.
We do not have a brick and mortar location. All sales are conducted through this website, at shows, and our eBay store.
We are currently researching and editing an archive of letters written by Sergeant Henry Lye of Company G, 1st United States Sharpshooters ("Berdan's"). If you have images, documents, or other items related to this unit, we'd be interested in hearing from you.
Henry Lye was born in Somerset, England in 1838. He emigrated to Canada as a young man and shortly thereafter was led, by family connections, to settle in southern Wisconsin. Soon Henry fell in love and was engaged to Almira Shearer, with whom he kept a steady correspondence during his service in the Union Army. Henry was a crack shot and in the summer of 1861 qualified for the company of sharpshooters forming in Wisconsin. That fall the company traveled to Washington, DC, and became Company G of Colonel Hiram Berdan's 1st United States Sharpshooters. Henry, a sergeant and bugler, participated in several of the major battles of 1862 and 1863, including the Peninsula Campaign, Second Bull Run, Antietam, and Chancellorsville. While resisting Longstreet's attack on July 2 at Gettysburg, Henry was mortally wounded near the Emmitsburg Road. He was hastily moved to a field hospital where he died the next day. He is buried in Gettysburg National Cemetery.
Henry's letters to Almira are full of vibrant content and offer a unique view into day-to-day life in one of the Civil War's most noteworthy regiments. We are interested in purchasing letters, documents, images, artifacts, uniform items, and weapons related to the Sharpshooters.