Personal Reminiscences of James A. Scrymser In Times of Peace and War. Custer's fording the Chickahominy River to bring information to General McClellan in 1862.
At the outbreak of the Civil War in. Scrymser was in his twenty-second year and had made no choice of a profession or calling. With Francis Channing Barlow, he enlisted as a private in the 12th New York Infantry, one of the units that went to the defense of Washington in the spring of 1861. He was soon commissioned a second lieutenant in the 43rd New York and later received a staff appointment in the division commanded by General William Farrar Smith. He served with the VI Corps, winning a captaincy, and later in the XVIII Army Corps, and is said to have been in all the battles of the Army of the Potomac for three years.Returning to New York after his discharge from military service at the end of the war, he had his attention directed to the need of telegraphic communication between the United States and Cuba. Cyrus Field's final and successful attempt to lay the Atlantic cable was well under way, and submarine cable systems had been projected in many parts of the world. For the International Ocean Telegraph Company, incorporated in 1865, Scrymser undertook almost single-handed to see that 235 miles of cable were laid from Florida to Cuba and secured sufficient capital to complete the task in 1867.
He had from the first been the motive power of the enterprise, and within a few years he became its titular head as well. When, in 1878, Jay Gould acquired the property Scrymser resigned the presidency and at once turned his attention to the development of telegraph lines in Mexico and Central America. He was the chief executive of the Mexican Cable (later Telegraph) Company after it began to operate in 1881.
The company held a fifty-year exclusive concession granted by Porfirio Diaz, president of Mexico, and controlled Mexico's land wires. Charles Henry Parkhurst was beginning his crusade in New York against the alliance of the police with protected vice, it was Scrymser who planned the great Cooper Union meeting that brought to the lone clergyman the open and substantial aid of influential elements in the city's population.He died in New York City. Excerpt from Personal Reminiscences of James a Scrymser, in Times of Peace and War : From time to time I have related incidents of the Civil War and of my activities after the War, and numerous friends have been good enough to suggest their compilation in book form. I have been a private collector of Civil War and Western Americana books and ephemera for about 30 years. I have recently decided to reduce the size of my library. I will be posting many, many Civil War and Western Americana related books in the coming months. Many of the items are very scarce. Key words- book, diary, biography, campaign, army, civil war, Indian war, cavalry, infantry, regiment, brigade, potomac, division, corps, medal, war, officer, cdv, military, American, soldier, navy, gun, gunboat, blockade, autograph, veteran, photograph, union, confederate, collectable, original, period, item, artillery, memorabilia, Antique, militaria, Virginia, Sherman, Grant, Lee, Jackson, mollus, commandery, loyal legion, Custer, Gettysburg, Lincoln, Davis, Colt, Spencer, Ames, Stanton, Farragut, Porter. This item is in the category "Books & Magazines\Antiquarian & Collectible".
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