Man 'devastated' after Civil War artifacts stolen

Civil War collector 'devastated' after artifacts stolen during car break-in

COBB COUNTY, Ga. — A man visiting Cobb County this weekend left town without many of his valuable Civil war artifacts after thieves broke into his rental car and stole it all.

Back home in Ohio, Cal Packard said he still is in shock after his visit to metro Atlanta this weekend.

He attended a Civil War show at the Cobb County Civic Center; before his flight, he went to see a movie at a theater on Cumberland Pkwy.

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Packard didn’t know then, but the area is prime target for car break-in thieves.

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“I opened the trunk and one of my suitcases was gone,” Packard said.

The thieves popped the lock on his rental car and took two large and heavy cases, both full of Packard’s Civil War collectibles.

“All the heavy stuff was in the carry-on and that was all the Civil War letters and all the really valuable stuff,” Packard said.

<p>Part of the victim&#39;s Civil War collection.</p>

Part of the victim's Civil War collection.

Packard sent Channel 2’s Ross Cavitt a picture of an example of the stuff taken, including a signed picture of Colonel John Mosby, valued on his website at nearly $10,000.

But besides the value of the items stolen, Packard seems to mostly be upset about the soldier’s letters that he and his wife had painstakingly transcribed.

“Thousands of hours were spent transcribing the letters, because soldier’s letters back in the Civil War were hard to make out,” Packard said. “All that work, it’s not just the fact of the value it’s the time we put into it, it’s just a heartbreak.”

There were other items in the car that also were taken, including coins and buttons.