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$4,302
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All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Sat, March 23 2019 3:59 AM UTC +00:00.

MarekBy Marek
First created
MarekBy Marek
First created
$4,302
pledged of $3,000pledged of $3,000 goal
108
backers
4days to go

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Sat, March 23 2019 3:59 AM UTC +00:00.

About

Hi, I'm Marek Bennett — cartoonist, teacher, & creator of the Freeman Colby graphic novels.  This Kickstarter supports the first printing of my new book, The Civil War Diary of Freeman Colby, Volume 2 !   

WEEK 3: STRETCH GOALS Reached & announced... 

  •  *REACHED!* $3,600 = BOOKPLATES ~ Original Freeman Colby art on a bookplate sticker for all backer copies!  I'm already planning a couple designs... VOTE HERE >> 
  • **REACHED!** $4,000 = FOLDING MAP ~ VOL. 2 already includes a couple big old maps spread over multiple pages. This goal glues a beautiful full-size folding map inside the back cover of all backer copies! (We did it! Yay!)
  •  $5,000 = "LIFE IN CAMP" VIgnette Cards ~ When we reach this level, each backer copy shipped out will include a set of 2-3 dozen "Life In Camp" collectible vignette cards!  These are based on the original "Life in Camp" series by Winslow Homer -- sort of a "Civil War Pokemon" project depicting typical scenes & characters around a Union camp.  (I used these cards as source material for a lot of scenes in Vol. 2, starting with the front cover.)  

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

About Freeman Colby Vol. 2 :

Freeman Colby was an actual school teacher from New Hampshire who joined the Union Army in the middle of the Civil War.  I've been drawing Colby's story since 2012, when I found a copy of his Civil War Diary on a dusty shelf at my local historical society. Vol. 2 details his adventures over the course of a single momentous year: January-December 1863.  It continues the story started in Vol. 1 (which was selected as a "Great Graphic Novel for Teens" by ALA's YA Library Services Association).

For this new book, I've drawn primarily from Colby's Civil War letters (written to his family back in New Hampshire).  I've also mixed in several other storylines drawn from diaries, letters, photos, & artwork by several of Colby's contemporaries.  As a result, Vol. 2 features a diverse cast of characters, each with their own unique perspectives on the events of 1863...  

Exactly what kind of "graphic novel" are we talking about here? 

Vol. 2 is ~540 pages long, with ~480 pages of black & white artwork, plus maps & source notes & other support materials.  It'll be the same size & feel as (but a little thicker than) Vol. 1.  

This project is part of my "Stick Figure Civil War" — drawing out American history in a simple, clear, & engaging format for readers of all ages (but especially Young Adult & up).  It's the Civil War as you've never seen it before, as told by people who lived through it! 

Here are some sample pages: 

I draw these comics in a pretty stripped-down style because I find (A) it makes the story much easier to read, and (B) it encourages readers (of all ages) to try their hand at making their own historical comics!  

What's the storyline?  

Over the course of 1863, Freeman Colby & his friend Jonas Bacon struggle to survive a particularly snowy winter in Maryland, stand guard at Washington, D.C, and then march deep into Virginia with the 39th Massachusetts Regiment.  Along the way, they cross paths with poets, widows, wounded soldiers, brave nurses, refugees escaping north from slavery (and others returning south to find their families), Confederate troops in search of coffee & songs, and more than a few hostile bullets...  As the autumn grows colder, Colby gets sick and ends up in a Union field hospital, while Jonas finds himself sent to the front to take part in the infamous Mine Run campaign.  

It's a fun, lively, harrowing, inspiring, illuminating, thought-provoking adventure, all drawn from primary source documents!

Freeman Colby / Sarah Low / Fannie Dawson / Jonas Bacon
Freeman Colby / Sarah Low / Fannie Dawson / Jonas Bacon

Who are the main characters? 

This book features most of the characters from Vol. 1: There's Colby himself, his childhood pal, Jonas Bacon, and the ever-menacing Captain Richardson... During the frequent gaps between Colby's letters home, several other characters step forward to share their stories --   such as:  

  • NH native Sarah Low, a volunteer nurse in Washington's Armory Square Hospital...
  •  Fannie Dawson is a strong, quick-thinking mother from Fredericksburg, desperately hoping to keep her family together at all costs.
  •  Walt Whitman makes an appearance (and contributes some poetry) drawn from his work in D.C. hospitals.
  •  Abraham Tuckson escapes to Union lines, then returns south to find his family -- even as he considers enlisting in the 23rd USCT). 
  • "Special Artist" Edwin Forbes prowls the Union camps, looking for sensational scenes to sketch!

I've been posting preview pages all year over at my patreon, where you'll also find a WHO'S WHO IN VOL. 2 post with lots more info about these characters.  

Your support powers the FIRST PRINTING of this new book! 

The flagship reward of this Kickstarter is a SIGNED PRINT COPY of Volume 2 (paperback), but I've also added in a bunch of other fun options, including special collector's edition HARDCOVER versions -- see below for details!

Featured REWARDS Include: 

 ↑ VOL 2 (SIGNED BOOK) = The main attraction!  Each copy comes with full-color postcard/bookmarks & the new Freeman Colby's ILLUSTRATED CIVIL WAR MAGAZINE! Signed by the author!

 ↑ VOL. 1 + 2 (SIGNED BOOKS) = The complete series (so far), 1861-1863! Includes postcards & magazines.

 ↑ VOL. 1 + 2 (HARDCOVER EDITIONS) = Special for this Kickstarter -- Both books are now available in custom-sketched HARDCOVER editions!   

 ↑ DOUBLE GIFT SET: VOL. 1 + 2 (2 each) = Double up!  Share the complete series with a friend! 

 ↑ COMICS WORKSHOP Library: VOL. 1 + 2 + HOUR 72!+ Nicaragua Comics Travel Journal  + SLOVAKIA: Fall in the Heart of Europe = The complete Freeman Colby series, plus the 3 travel/history graphic novels that led me to draw Freeman Colby !  

 ↑ VOL. 2 (set of 10) = Perfect for a reading group, or for sharing with friends & family. Includes postcard/bookmarks & a magazine w/ each book.   

 ↑ VOL. 2 + Original Artwork = Add on a page of original artwork from the new book! (Send your top 5-10 choices, or I'll pick one for you.)   

 ↑ VOL. 1 + 2 (sets of 10 each) = The complete series, ready for your book group!   

 ↑ VOL. 2 (set of 20) = A full class set (with a special limited offer for schools & libraries)!

NEW! Special STRETCH REWARDS !! = 

 ↑ Hardcover VOL. 1 & 2 + Hardtacks CD! [$70] = Read the whole series in signed + custom sketched hardcover editions, with a soundtrack by Marek's Civil War folk music band, The Hardtacks!  (Their 2016 CD "Global Banjar: Politics, Race, & Empire in Antebellum Banjo Music Worldwide!" was featured in NH Magazine's "Best of NH 2016" issue. Includes a 28p booklet about the banjo music of Colby's generation)   

 ↑ Supersize "DISPLAY EDITIONS" of VOL. 1 & 2! = For the first time ever, I'm making these special monster-sized tomes available to the public!  These are the 8.5"x11" books I use for classroom display & for deskside reference.  They feature all the artwork pages at FULL SIZE (the size at which I drew 'em), spiral bound so they stay open on your desk.  They're great for close reading, school & library settings, or for artists who want to study the story in detail.  Get either Vol. 2 [$40] or Vol. 1+2 together [$60], signed & sketched w/ a custom Civil War character of your choice! 

Stay tuned for more updates...

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR SUPPORTING THIS PROJECT!

Risks and challenges

I've spent the past two years researching, drawing, and editing this book (with the help of many kind friends, students, teachers, & Patreon supporters). That means all the hardest stuff is DONE, and this book is READY TO PRINT. This Kickstarter helps me establish the size of the first printing -- once we wrap up here, I'll verify final proofs & place the print order via Ingram Spark / Lightning Source at the end of March. In the past these print jobs have taken about 2-3 weeks. Then I'll do all the signing / sketching, & ship out pre-orders in April...
I've deliberately planned this process so we'll have plenty of time to complete each step.
That stuff is all normal business operations for COMICS WORKSHOP --
Your participation makes it extra-awesome, though!
Anyhow, I'll keep you posted on the whole process via this site + www.MarekBennett.com + www.patreon.com/marekbennett ...

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    Pledge $12 or more About $12

    FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (PDF)

    An advance PDF version of the complete Vol. 2... No paper, no shipping.
    (Plus, your purchase helps print the real book!)

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (PDF)
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (signed)

    THIS IS IT! The adventure continues in FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2, signed by the artist (please specify any name/dedication).
    + postcards!
    + FREEMAN COLBY'S ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE, &c.

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    Complete Set (VOL. 2 + VOL. 1)

    Signed copy of the new FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2,
    PLUS a signed copy of THE CIVIL WAR DIARY OF FREEMAN COLBY (VOL. 1).
    Now you can read the whole story (so far)!
    ...
    + postcards + cool tabloids featuring the archival images I used to draw the comics!

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 1 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 1: 1862)
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    Complete Set (VOL. 1+2) INTERNATIONAL

    Sent to an address OUTSIDE THE US via USPS PRIORITY MAIL:
    Signed copies of FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 1 & 2 =
    The complete story (so far)!
    ...
    + postcards + tabloids featuring archival images that inspired the comics!

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 1 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 1: 1862)
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    Special Edition Hardcover VOL. 2!

    HARDCOVERRRRRR!?! YES! Special for this Kickstarter: The Collector's Edition HARDCOVER Freeman Colby Vol. 2, signed & decorated by Marek w/ a custom sketch of a Civil War character of your choosing (or artist's choice)!
    + postcards!
    + the MAGAZINE!
    &c. &c.

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (HARDCOVER, signed & sketched)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    Supersize "DISPLAY EDITION" VOL. 2!

    The gigantic DISPLAY EDITION of Freeman Colby Vol. 2, featuring all 470 artwork pages AT FULL SIZE (8.5"x11", the size Marek drew them!), & SPIRAL BOUND for easy opening. This monstrous tome is the perfect size for easy reading, classroom use, or for artists who want to study the artwork up close.
    Signed & decorated by Marek w/ a custom sketch of a Civil War character (your choice or artist's choice)!
    + postcards!
    + the MAGAZINE!
    &c. &c.

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (Supersize Spiral Bound Display Edition)
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    DOUBLE Gift Set (2x VOL. 2 + 2x VOL. 1)

    Share Freeman Colby's Civil War adventures with a friend...
    2 signed FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 books
    + 2 signed FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 1 books,
    4 books total at an antebellum price!
    PLUS tabloids chock full of primary source reference images!

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 1 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 1: 1862)
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    Special Edition Hardcover VOL. 1 & 2!

    For the first time ever: Collector's Edition HARDCOVER copies of Freeman Colby Vol. 1 & Vol. 2, signed & decorated by Marek w/ a custom sketch in each of a Civil War character of your choosing (or artist's choice)!
    + postcards + magazines!
    &c. &c.

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (HARDCOVER, signed & sketched)
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 1 (HARDCOVER, signed & sketched)
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 1: 1862)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    Supersize "DISPLAY EDITION" VOL. 1+2!

    Volumes 1 & 2 in the supersize DISPLAY EDITION, featuring over 800 pages AT FULL SIZE (8.5"x11", the size Marek drew them!), SPIRAL BOUND for easy opening... The perfect size for easy reading by a flickering campfire, classroom use, or for tabletop reference by artists who want to study the artwork up close.
    Each book = signed & decorated by Marek w/ a custom sketch of a Civil War character (your choice or artist's choice)!
    + postcards!
    + the MAGAZINE!
    &c. &c.

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (Supersize Spiral Bound Display Edition)
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 1 (Supersize Spiral Bound Display Edition)
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 1: 1862)
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    Hardcover VOL. 1 & 2 + Hardtacks CD!

    ++ Read the entire series along w/ the musical soundtrack to Colby's world! ++ = Collector's Edition HARDCOVER copies of Freeman Colby Vol. 1 & Vol. 2, each signed & decorated by Marek w/ a custom sketch of a Civil War character (your choice or artist's choice)
    + 1 "GLOBAL BANJAR!" CD by Marek's Civil War folk music band THE HARDTACKS
    + postcards + magazines!
    &c. &c.

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (HARDCOVER, signed & sketched)
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 1 (HARDCOVER, signed & sketched)
    • HARDTACKS CD: "Global Banjar" (antebellum banjo music)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 1: 1862)
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    Comics Workshop Library (5 books + &c.)

    FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 1 + 2...
    + HOUR 72! + NICARAGUA COMICS TRAVEL JOURNAL + SLOVAKIA: FALL IN THE HEART OF EUROPE
    = over 1600 pages of comics drawn "on the march" & "in the field"! 24 hour comics, travel comics, sketchbooks, & the various international odysseys that led Marek to start the Freeman Colby series!

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 1 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (signed)
    • HOUR 72! graphic novel (signed)
    • NICARAGUA COMICS TRAVEL JOURNAL (signed)
    • SLOVAKIA: FALL IN THE HEART OF EUROPE graphic novel (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 1: 1862)
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (Set of 5)

    An armload of autographed VOL. 2 at a special batch price!
    + a postcard/bookmark tucked into each copy.
    + the ILLUSTRATED MAGAZINE, featuring Civil War photographs & artwork.
    Perfect for sharing with family & friends.

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    Special Hardcover VOL. 2! (Set of 5)

    HARDCOVERRRRRR!?! YES!
    FIVE COPIES of the Collector's Edition HARDCOVER VOL. 2, signed & sketched by Marek, each w/ a custom sketch of a Civil War character of your choosing (or artist's choice)!
    + all that other good stuff....

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (HARDCOVER, signed & sketched)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (Set of 10)

    A full shelf of autographed VOL. 2 at a special batch price!
    + a postcard/bookmark tucked into each copy.
    + the ILLUSTRATED MAGAZINE, featuring Civil War photographs & artwork.
    Perfect for retail or class sets.

    Includes:
    • 10× FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • 10× FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
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    FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 + Original Art Page

    Your own signed copy of VOL. 2!
    + 1 page of original hand-drawn artwork from the book!
    (You can select your favorite 10 or so pages & I'll do my best to match your choice...
    Artwork ships w/in 6 weeks after you send me your page selections.)

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 Original Artwork (1p)
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 1 & 2 (10 each)

    A full shelf of autographed VOLUMES 1 & 2 at a special batch price!
    + a postcard/bookmark tucked into each copy
    + ILLUSTRATED MAGAZINES, featuring Civil War photographs & artwork.
    The complete series (so far), perfect for retail or class sets.

    Includes:
    • 10× FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 1 (signed)
    • 10× FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • 10× FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 1: 1862)
    • 10× FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    FREEMAN COLBY VOL.2 (x20) + AUTHOR VISIT

    SPECIAL LIMITED OFFER FOR SCHOOLS & LIBRARIES & HISTORICAL SOCIETIES:
    A full autographed VOLUME 2 class set at a special batch price!
    BONUS: Marek will make a COMICS WORKSHOP AUTHOR VISIT* to your organization!
    + postcards + magazines...
    ///
    *FINE PRINT: (AUTHOR VISIT = 1 assembly and/or 1-2 classroom workshops, 2-3 hours total / details & schedule TBD / travel or mileage to be paid by host / add-ons available )

    Includes:
    • 20× FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • 20× FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    Early Bird Special: VOL. 2 (signed)

    The latest FREEMAN COLBY book, fresh off the press!
    Autographed by the artist (please specify any name/dedication)
    + postcards! + "FREEMAN COLBY'S ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE" (chock full of Civil War photos & artwork)
    [ Free shipping in the USA ]
    [ AVAILABLE ONLY DURING THE OPENING 48 HOURS OF THE KICKSTARTER! ]

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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    Early Bird Special: Complete Set!

    Signed copies of FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 1 & 2
    + postcards
    + magazines
    [ Free shipping in USA ]
    [ AVAILABLE ONLY DURING THE OPENING 72 HOURS OF THE KICKSTARTER! ]

    Includes:
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 2 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY VOL. 1 (signed)
    • FREEMAN COLBY Postcards
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 1: 1862)
    • FREEMAN COLBY's ILLUSTRATED Civil War MAGAZINE (Vol. 2: 1863)
    • Your first name listed on the VOL. 2 "THANKS!" page.
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