Original Civil War Suitcase and Canteen of Capt. L.B. Fairbanks of the 3rd Vermont Infantry


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        Sergeant L.B. Fairbanks                                             Capt. L.B. Fairbanks

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                 Capt. Fairbanks               Capt. Fairbanks, 3rd Vt. and Capt. Fairbanks’ Wife


Original Civil War Suitcase and Canteen of Capt. L.B. Fairbanks of the 3rd Vermont Infantry – This rare example of a Civil War period suitcase of a Union officer remains in overall good condition. Boldly stenciled on one side of the case is: “Capt L.B. Fairbanks 3rd Vt. Vols”. When we obtained this suitcase, Fairbanks’ M1858 smoothside canteen remained inside; the canteen is in excellent condition, with a complete cover, pleated cotton shoulder strap and it original stopper and chain. The suitcase’s leather is supple and a fine, russet color. The case does have some seam openings and is missing the lock, although the brass hasp is still in place. The interior, lined in linen, is soiled, but intact. The exterior top and bottoms of the case are decoratively embossed and have attractive brass, domed tacks. Both original leather handles remain in place and in strong condition, as does one closure strap. We have had several officer’s trunks, but this is the first Civil War suitcase we have seen, much less Id’d. Capt. Fairbanks had an impressive war record, which is enumerated below. We will provide to the buyer, a compendium of our thorough research of Capt. Fairbanks’ life.

 Luke B. Fairbanks

Residence Bethel VT;  Enlisted on 7/1/1861 as a Corporal.  On 7/16/1861 he mustered into “F” Co. VT 3rd Infantry  He Re-enlisted on 12/21/1863 He was Mustered Out on 7/11/1865 at Burlington, VT   He was listed as: * POW (date and place not stated) (Paroled) * Wounded 4/16/1862 Lee’s Mills, VA * Paroled 1/21/1863 (place not stated)  Promotions: * Sergt  * 1st Lieut 6/26/1864 (As of Co. H) * Capt 8/31/1864 (As of Co. C)   Intra Regimental Company Transfers: * 6/26/1864 from company F to company H  * 8/31/1864 from company H to company CENGAGEMENTS.      Lewinsville, Va., Sept. 11, 1861.     Lee’s Mills, Va., April 16, 1862.     Williamsburg, Va., May 5, 1862.     Golding’s Farm, Va., June 26, 1862.     Savage’s Station, Va., June 29,1862.     White Oak Swamp, Va., June 30, 1862.     Crampton’s Gap, Md., Sept. 14, 1862.     Antietam, Md., Sept. 17, 1862.     First Fredericksburg, Va., Dec. 13, 1862.     Marye’s Heights, Va., May 3, 1863.     Salem Heights, Va., May 4, 1863.     Fredericksburg, Va., June 5, 1863.     Gettysburg, Pa., July 3, 1863.     Funkstown, Md., July 10, 1863.      Rappahannock Station, Va., Nov. 7, 1863.     Wilderness, Va., May 5 to 10, 1864.     Spotsylvania, Va., May 10 to 18, 1864.     Cold Harbor, Va., June 1 to 12, 1864.     Petersburg, Va., June 18, 1864.     Reams’s Station, Va., June 29, 1864.     Ft. Stevens, Md., July 11, 1864.     Charlestown, W. Va., Aug. 21, 1864.     Opequan, Va.,  Sept. 13, 1864.     Winchester, Va., Sept. 19, 1864.     Fisher’s Hill, Va., Sept. 21 and 22, 1864.     Cedar Creek, Va., Oct. 19, 1864.     Petersburg, Va., March 25 and 27, 1865.     Petersburg, Va., April 2, 1865.

3rd VT Infantry

Organized: St Johnsbury, VT on 7/1/61
Mustered Out: 7/11/65 at Burlington, VTOfficers Killed or Mortally Wounded: 5
Officers Died of Disease, Accidents, etc.: 1
Enlisted Men Killed or Mortally Wounded: 201
Enlisted Men Died of Disease, Accidents, etc.: 164
(Source: Fox, Regimental Losses)









Aug ’61 Oct ’61 Smith’s Army of Potomac New Organization
Oct ’61 Mar ’62 1 Smith’s Army of Potomac
Mar ’62 May ’62 2 2 4 Army of Potomac
May ’62 Jul ’64 2 2 6 Army of Potomac
Aug ’64 Dec ’64 2 2 6 Army of the Shenandoah
Dec ’64 Jul ’65 2 2 6 Army of Potomac Mustered Out




Birth: Mar. 26, 1838
Windsor County
Vermont, USA
Death: Oct. 23, 1907
Mower County
Minnesota, USA
Luke B. Fairbanks was born in Vermont, March 26, 1838. When he was seventeen years of age he went to Iowa to join his brother in Mitchell county, and spent three years with him in Mitchell and Howard counties, then came to Austin with him. His brother purchased an interest in a steam saw mill, and later added a flour mill. He assisted his brother in the mill there until 1860, when he sold out and bought a farm in Windom. He spent the summer with his brother here; then in the fall returned to Vermont.
He enlisted there, in May, 1861, in Company F, Third Vermont Volunteer Infantry, and with the regiment joined the Army of the Potomac. The first battle in which he participated was the battle of Lee’s Mill, in which he was wounded. As soon as he was able to make the trip he was granted a furlough and visited home. He joined the regiment after an absence of three months. His health was not good at the time, and he was detached for the recruiting service in Vermont.
He again joined the regiment in December, and was with them until after the close of the war, having veteranized in 1863. Among the many battles in which he participated, we mention the following: Second battle of Fredericksburg, Wilderness, Petersburg, Cold Harbor, Spotsylvania, was with Sheridan in the Shenandoah Valley, and participated in the battle of Winchester, was in New York City at the time of the riot, and in the battles of Gettysburg and Cedar Creek. He was mustered into the service as a private. He was promoted for gallant and meritorious conduct, May, 1864, to first lieutenant, and soon after to captain. He was discharged from the service with the regiment, July. 1865, and returned to Vermont and bought a farm.
In 1869 he sold out there and emigrated to Kansas. He took a homestead and bought some wild land in Washington county. He built a stone house and improved a portion of the land, living there until 1872, when he sold and came to Mower county and bought wild land in the northeast quarter of section 29, Windom township.
He was joined in marriage in 1863 to Caro Bowen, also a native of Vermont.
They had seven children, named Samuel, Henry, Eugene, Guy, Dan, Leila and Florence.
In 1893 Mr. Fairbanks sold his farm in Mower county and removed to southern California, where he remained two years. He then returned to Austin, where he resided until his death, October 24, 1907.
Civil War Vet
3rd Vermont Infantry Co. C
Luke B. Fairbanks (Union)Enlistment:
- Residing in Bethel, VT at time of enlistment
- Enlisted on Jul 1 1861 as Corporal

Mustering information:
- Enlisted into F Company, 3rd Infantry (Vermont) on Jul 16 1861
- Mustered out from 3rd Infantry (Vermont) on Jul 11 1865 at Burlington, VT
Sources for the above information:
- Roster of Vermont Volunteers During the
Intra-company transfers:
- Transferred from F Company to H Company on Jun 26 1864
- Transferred from H Company to C Company on Aug 31 1864

- Promoted to Sergt(date not indicated)
- Promoted to 1st Lieut on Jun 26 1864 (As of Co. H)
- Promoted to Capt on Aug 31 1864 (As of Co. C)

Listed as:
- POW (date not indicated) (Paroled)
- Wounded on Apr 16 1862 at Lee’s Mills, VA
- Paroled on Jan 21 1863

War of the Rebellion 1861-66, (1892)






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