The Bloomfield-Pike letterbook contains copies of outgoing correspondence from two important American generals in the northern theater during the War of 1812.
Language: The material is in English Repository: William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan
909 S. University Ave. The University of Michigan Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1190 Phone: 734-764-2347 Web Site: www.clements.umich.edu
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Bloomfield-Pike Letterbook, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan
Entitled "Letters & Instructions" on the leather cover, the letterbook contains four sections. The first and third sections (pp.1-36 and 124-156) include orders issued by Zebulon Pike; the second section (pp. 37-123) includes orders issued under Bloomfield's command, and finally, at the end of the volume (pp.160-175) there are manuscript copies of popular songs of uncertain date and origin.
In the earliest days of the War of 1812, New Jersey Governor, Joseph Bloomfield, resigned his office to accept a commission as Brigadier General in command of the 3rd Military District. Though nearly 60 at the time, Bloomfield organized and trained new troops near New York City, then marched a column of 8,000 to the scene of action at Plattsburg, N.Y. Later in the war, he was instrumental in the defense of Philadelphia.
For Zebulon Pike the war was an opportunity to repair his somewhat tarnished reputation. As a hero for his role in leading an exploring expedition into the West in 1805-1807, Pike had been accused of complicity in Aaron Burr's treasonous scheme for a Southwest empire. Formally exonerated, he was promoted to Brigadier General early in 1813 and assigned to the northern theater. Charged with leading American forces in the assault on York (now Toronto) in April, 1813, Pike organized an effective campaign that resulted in a major victory. During the assault of April 27th, however, he was killed in an explosion of the enemy's powder magazine.
Collection Scope and Content Note
The Bloomfield-Pike letterbook contains copies of outgoing correspondence from two important American generals in the northern theater during the War of 1812. It documents two months of Joseph Bloomfield's command at Plattsburg, September-November, 1812, and the last two months of Zebulon Montgomery Pike's life, while commanding American forces at Saranac and Sackett's Harbor, N.Y. This letterbook contains no letters written after the departure of American forces from Sackett's Harbor during the assault on York, Ontario.
Given its two-part nature, the letterbook presents a minor problem regarding its origin and provenance. It appears first to have been used by a member of Bloomfield's staff. Memoranda were entered at the front of the letterbook in a section reserved for them, and copies of outgoing letters were recorded further back in chronological order. When the book came into Pike's use, a member of his staff entered copies of letters in two different places: sometimes in the first available blank pages (pp. 1-36) and sometimes at the end of where the Bloomfield letters had left off (p. 123). Both sections are in chronological order, but the dates of letters overlap. How, precisely, the book went from recording orders issued by Bloomfield to orders issued by Pike has not been determined, but it may have been the property of a officer under Bloomfield's command who was transferred under Pike near the end of the year, 1812.
United States. Army--History--War of 1812.
United States. Army--Officers.
United States--History--War of 1812.
United States--History--War of 1812--Songs and music.
orders (military records)
Container / Location
Authorship by Zebulon Pike, 1813 [series]
[Note: Orders are listed by date, with recipient and location of writing ]
1813 February 28, Albon Mann, Cantonment Saranac
1813 February 28, Callender Irvine (d. 1841), Cantonment Saranac
1813 February 28, Henry Dearborn (1751-1829), Cantonment Saranac
1813 March 1, Colonel Pierce, Cantonment Saranac
1813 March 1, [General], Cantonment Saranac
1813 March 2, Henry Dearborn, Cantonment Saranac
1813 March 2, John Chandler (1762-1841), Cantonment Saranac
1813 March 3, John Chandler, Cantonment Saranac
1813 March 3, Rufus King (1755-1827), Cantonment Saranac
1813 March 3, [Requisition], Cantonment Saranac
1813 March 6, [?], Chautauqau Four Corners
1813 March 6, Ephraim L. Whitlock, Chautauqua
1813 March 7, Colonel Pierce, Chautauqua
1813 March 7, Alexander Campbell Wilder Fanning (1788-1846), Chautauqua
1813 March 7, [?]
1813 March 7, Colonel Pierce
1813 March 8, Ephraim L. Whitlock, 10 miles from Hopkinton
1813 March 8, John Chandler, 10 miles from Hopkinton
1813 March 8, Melancthon Taylor Woolsey (1780-1838), 10 miles from Hopkinton
1813 March 8, Zebulon Pike (d. 1834), 10 miles from Hopkinton
1813 March 8, Henry Dearborn, Hopkinton
1813 March 13, Melancthon Taylor Woolsey, Sacketts Harbor
1813 March 13, 1st Battalion, U.S. No. Army, Sacketts Harbor
1813 March 13, John Chandler, Sacketts Harbor
1813 March 15, Henry Dearborn, Sacketts Harbor
1813 March 18, John Chandler, Sacketts Harbor
1813 March 18, Henry Dearborn, Sacketts Harbor
1813 March 18, Daniel D. Tompkins (1774-1825), Sacketts Harbor
1813 March 22, Jacob Jennings Brown (1775-1828), Sacketts Harbor
1813 March 22, Colonel Tombs, Sacketts Harbor
1813 March 23, John Armstrong (1758-1843), Sacketts Harbor
1813 March 25, Mr. Ritchards, Sacketts Harbor
1813 March 25, [Orders to March on St. Lawrence County], Sacketts Harbor
1813 March 26, Henry Dearborn, Sacketts Harbor
1813 March 27, William Swan (d. 1872), Sacketts Harbor
1813 March 27, Sacketts Harbor
1813 March 28, William R. Barnet, Sacketts Harbor
Authorship by Joseph Bloomfield, 1812 [series]
[Note: Orders are listed by date with recipient and location of writing ]
1812 September 14, William Eustis (1753-1825), Plattsburg
1812 September 14, William Eustis, Plattsburg
1812 September 17, Henry Dearborn [Incomplete?], Plattsburg
1812 September 17, Captain Winans, Plattsburg
1812 September 17, Henry Dearborn, Plattsburg
1812 September 20, Henry Dearborn, Plattsburg
1812 September 17, [?], Plattsburg
1812 September 20, Isaac Clark (d. 1822), Plattsburg
1812 September 20, Simon Larned, Plattsburg
1812 September 20, General Ormes, Plattsburg
1812 September 21, Plattsburg
1812 September 20, Samuel H. Holley (d. 1858), Plattsburg
1812 September 22, [Orders re conveyance of Indians], Plattsburg
1812 September 22, Henry Dearborn (1751-1829), Plattsburg
1812 September 22, Daniel D. Tompkins (1774-1825), Plattsburg
1812 September 22, Henry Dearborn, Plattsburg
1812 September 23, Simon Larned, Plattsburg
1812 September 23, [Orders], Plattsburg
1812 September 23, Pliny Moore, et al., Plattsburg
1812 September 24, Valentine R. Goodrich (d. 1814), Plattsburg