Canteen & Revolutionary War Diary
I brought in a canteen and a diary that belonged to my fourth great-grandfather. It's come down through the family, some of the genealogy and other papers that we've saved over the years.
Who did the genealogical work?
I know a great-great-aunt had done some. My father had done some. I've done some.
You've done some, so it's a family contribution of putting this whole package together of your great-great-great- grandfather, Daniel Graves, from Reading, Massachusetts.
This is a neat canteen that belonged to him when he was a lieutenant, and then a captain in the Massachusetts militia in 1794 and 1797. It shows he was in the 2nd regiment, 1st brigade, 3rd division. And then here's his name, D. Graves. It's a wonderful post-Revolutionary War example of a good canteen. But the highlight of all of this material, all of this documented material, is the journal that he kept. And it starts out, "Diary of Daniel Graves. "Found in an old book chest in a garret, by Mary Graves, before 1860." And then in it is the whole history of his military experience from December of 1776 through March of 1777. Starting out in Reading, Westchester County in New York, going into New Jersey. Fighting Hessians. Men freezing to death. And what I'd really like to read is this-- you find this on powder horns. Daniel Graves, his pocket book, March 5, 1777. "If this I lose, and you you do find, return it me and I'll be kind. Daniel Graves." I think that's wonderful. But all through this are the story... the hardships that these men had to go through in the winter. In one place water up to their hips marching to meet General Washington's army. It's just a grand story. Do you have any idea of the value?
No, I do not.
I just know that it's something that we read and when the kids go through school and they start studying the Revolutionary War, we read it to them and it's something to expand their experience.
Well, I would say that this group, and the primary item is the diary, which is extremely rare, with the canteen, the diary, and all of your genealogical work, I would say it's a $35,000 to $45,000 package.
Well, thank you.
It's very interesting to hear about it.
As a family we look at it every ten years and go, "Oh, that's really neat," but it really belongs to America.
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