Auctions | November 4, 2021

Civil War Collection of James C. Frasca Presented by Hindman Auctions

Courtesy of Hindman Auctions

Benjamin Franklin partly printed document signed (“B. Franklin”), as President of the Supreme Executive Council of Pennsylvania, 6 August 1787. Estimate: $12,000-16,000

Cincinnati, OH – On November 12, Hindman Auctions will present The Civil War Collection of James C. Frasca, an incredibly distinguished collector and dealer of Civil War memorabilia. This carefully curated and meticulously researched collection contains relics, weaponry, uniforms, accoutrements, corps badges, photographs, documents and personal items used by soldiers on and off the battlefield.

As a nationally known Civil War collector, Frasca spent 50 years of his life developing his collection, and he often credited his mother Ann Carmen Frasca for igniting in him the passion to search for and acquire historical objects. Frasca was recognized as an expert in the field, specializing in Civil War Federal uniforms, headgear, corps badges and other insignia. He also loved Civil War soldiers’ personal stories. As a collector, he contributed both editorially and pictorially to dozens of text and reference books, television programs and theatrical films, ranging from the voluminous Time-Life Books Civil War series to the History Channel’s Civil War documentaries. As a full-time dealer of Civil War artifacts for more than 40 years, Frasca placed outstanding material in virtually every major private Civil War collection in the country and a great many of our most prominent museums. Examples of such items include John Brown’s inscribed and annotated Bible in Harper’s Ferry to a pair of Robert E. Lee’s documented wartime gauntlets at the Civil War National Museum in Harrisburg, PA.

The auction will lead with valuable documents signed by Founding Fathers Benjamin Franklin, John Hancock, George Washington, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. Highlights also include a pair of Union Army slouch hats (lot 112; estimate: $40,000 - $60,000) identified to Captain Charles E. Nash, 19th Maine Infantry; a presentation sword for Lieutenant W.H. Hamilton, Co. I, 14th Vermont Infantry, KIA Gettysburg (lot 10; estimate: $8,000 - $10,000); and a gold and silver corps badge presented to Lieutenant Colonel Charles Kochersperger, 71st Pennsylvania / 1st California Regiment (lot 63; estimate: $4,000 - $6,000). A collection of items identified to Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Biggs, 123rd Illinois Infantry, “Wilder’s Brigade,” highlighted by a bullet-struck frock coat and vest worn during the assault on Selma, Alabama on April 2, 1865, is another noteworthy lot (lot 99; estimate: $20,000 - $30,000).

Standout lots also include beautifully painted drums featuring patriotic and military motifs (lots 122, 123 & 124; estimates: $8,000 - $10,000) and a premier hard tack collection featuring multiple examples that survived the Civil War as well as a sixth plate tintype of federal soldiers eating hard tack.
Additional information about the auction can be found at the auction page here and the catalogue can be viewed here.