Benjamin Brown French, Commissioner of Public Buildings during the Abraham Lincoln administration, really functioned as sort of a master of protocol arranging public events and apparently delivering gifts to the President.
"I had the honor to present to the President a pair of woolen socks, knit by Miss Addie Brockway of Newburyport, the secession flag underneath the foot of each, the Flag of the Union in front on the top. Very suggestive. The President received them most graciously & with much apparent pleasure." March 20, 1864
His description matches another pair of socks.
"Pair of Hand-knit Civil War Era Wool Socks with Flag Motifs, reportedly Pennsylvania, c. 1861 framed with a clipped newspaper article explaining the origin reported to have been shorn, carded, spun, and knit by a young Pennsylvania woman in 1861 for her friend A.J. Arnold" Skinner Auction catalog.
Editors of French's journal thought Addie Brockway might be Harriet Brockway of Newburyport, Massachusetts, but with better access to public records today we find an Adelaide M. Brockway (1838-1903), Harriet's niece.
Addie and their home full of women are described in a recent local history:
"The Brockways had only one child, Adelaide, who was noted to be fat and jovial and one of the last to wear hoopskirts long after they were no longer fashionable. They also had two sisters of Mrs. Brockway who lived with them: Mrs. Alden and Miss Bartlett. These ladies filled the land with prolific gardens wearing big sun bonnets. They were also kindly and would pass out gingerbread men to kids in the neighborhood."