[BIOGRAPHY]. ELDERKIN, James D. Biographical Sketches and Anecdotes of the Soldier of Three Wars, As Written by Himself. The Florida, The Mexican and the Great Rebellion, together with Sketches of Travel, also of Service in a Militia Company and Member of the Detroit Light Guard Band for over Thirty Years. Detroit, Mich., May 1, 1899. ,  2-202 pp., 3 plates (including frontispiece). 12mo (17.5 x 14 cm), original green cloth over pictorial boards with author’s portrait on upper board. Upper board slightly waterstained and chipped, but overall a fine copy. No copies at auction in over thirty years.
First edition. Dornbusch, Michigan 56. Graff 1229. Howes E82. Tutorow 3700.
The author’s experiences in the Mexican-American War are on pp. 51-82. He includes brief descriptions of Palo Alto and Resaca de la Palma. Conditions in Texas were harsh, he recalls, with no tents and little food. After Resaca de la Palma, however, he was able to capture “several boxes of fine cigars and a box of red claret wine, and a box of chocolate. These luxuries were a great prize to a tired, hungry soldier who had subsisted on fat pork and hardtack and even without that for hours” (p. 54). He was transferred to Scott’s army and participated in the battles of Veracruz, Cerro Gordo, and the assault on Mexico City. He describes the surrender and fate of the San Patricios (pp. 65-66). General “Squaw Killer” Harney, who was detailed to hang the group, upon being told that one was too sick to be brought out, remarked, “Bring him out and hang him; d--n him, that will cure him” (p. 66). (The man had just had both legs amputated.)