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American Civil War Pictures and Photographs

I photographed most of the following at the newest and largest American Civil War museum west of the Mississippi River. The Texas Civil War Museum*, located in Fort Worth, opened in January 2006 and most artifacts, relics and items have never been viewed by the public. (Additional Civil War pictures, photos, and artwork may be viewed via links at the bottom of page.)

Courtesy of the Texas Civil War Museum
(Click to Enlarge)

General Joseph Jo Shelby.jpg

Confederate Uniform.jpg

General Joseph "Jo" Orville Shelby (December 12, 1830 – February 13, 1897) was a Confederate cavalry general in the Trans-Mississippi Theater of the American Civil War. Frank and Jesse James, and James and Cole Younger served with Quantrill's Raiders during the conflict and the famed raiders allegedly saved General Jo Shelby from capture on December 7, 1862, at the Battle of Prairie Grove. Well-known "Bloody Bill" Anderson would join Quantrill's Raiders in 1863.
 
General "Ector's Brigade Flag" at Chickamauga (2nd Bloodiest Battle of the War)
Courtesy of the Texas Civil War Museum
(Click to Enlarge)

General Ector's Brigade Flag
Confederate Brigade Flag.jpg

Ector, Matthew Duncan (1822-1879) Born in Putnam County, Georgia, February 28, 1822. Member of Georgia state legislature; member of Texas state legislature, 1855; general in the Confederate Army during the Civil War (Ector had a below-the-knee amputation of his left leg at the Battle of Chickamauga); Judge, Texas Court of Appeals, 1866-1879. Died October 29, 1879. Buried at Greenwood Cemetery, Marshall, Texas. Ector County, Texas, is named in honor of General Ector.
 
Rebel Hand Grenade
Courtesy of the Texas Civil War Museum
(Click to Enlarge)

Confederate Hand Grenade.jpg

Union Hand Grenade: It was used during the Vicksburg and Petersburg Sieges
Courtesy of the Texas Civil War Museum
(Click to Enlarge)

Union Civil War Hand Grenade.jpg

General John Bell Hood's Brigade Flag Finial Hit During Battle
Courtesy of the Texas Civil War Museum
(Click to Enlarge)

Civil War Flag.jpg

Confederate Battle Flag.jpg

General Nathan Bedford Forrest's Artillery: 2nd Tennessee Light Artillery Battery Flag
Courtesy of the Texas Civil War Museum
(Click to Enlarge)

Nathan Bedford Forrest.jpg

General Nathan Bedford Forrest.jpg

LeMat Revolver (The Most lethal Pistol of the War)
Courtesy of the Texas Civil War Museum
(Click to Enlarge)

LeMat Revolver.jpg

Civil War Pistol.jpg

Original Civil War Pistol.jpg

Jean Alexandre François LeMat, a French physician living in New Orleans, patented the LeMat revolver in the United States on October 21, 1856. The fearsome weapon fired nine .42 or .36 caliber shots from a top barrel, while the lower barrel delivered a massive 16 gauge shotgun blast. Effective range was 40 yards with a maximum range of 100 yards. To protect his invention, LeMat took out patents in a number of European countries, including France. At the outbreak of the Civil War, LeMat secured a contract from the Confederate Ordnance Department to provide 5,000 of the pistols, and he traveled to the safety of Paris to begin manufacturing them. However, roughly 2,900 were produced, with approximately 2,500 used by the Confederacy. The first shipments of these pistols passed through the Union blockade into the Confederacy during the summer of 1862. Although these LeMats were originally intended for Confederate naval officers, many ended up in the hands of cavalry officers and other high-ranking Confederates. Generals J. E. B. Stuart and P. G. T. Beauregard both carried LeMat pistols. When Andersonville Prison commander Henry Wirz surrendered to Union officers, he turned over a LeMat to his captors. In the award winning movie Cold Mountain, W. P. Inman located a LeMat on the battlefield and quickly put it to use. (See Civil War Pistol: LeMat Revolver.)

 
Piano Purchased by President Jefferson Davis
Courtesy of the Texas Civil War Museum
(Click to Enlarge)

President Jefferson Davis Piano.jpg

President Jefferson Davis Piano.jpg

Major General Robert F. Hoke's Frock Coat
Courtesy of the Texas Civil War Museum
(Click to Enlarge)

General Robert Hoke.jpg

Civil War Uniform (Confederate Uniform).jpg

Headquarters Flag of General Robert F. Hoke

Courtesy North Carolina Museum of History

(Click to Enlarge)

General Robert F. Hoke.jpg

A native of Lincolnton, General Robert F. Hoke rose to the rank of major general during the Civil War. This is a second national pattern Confederate flag adopted on May 1, 1863 and used until replaced on March 4, 1865. Because of its large white field this pattern flag was nicknamed the "stainless banner." This flag most certainly marked Hoke's headquarters during his brilliant victory at Plymouth, North Carolina, on April 20, 1864. This flag was donated to the state sometime after Hoke's death in 1912.

 
Recommended Reading: Don Troiani's Civil War. Description: Although he has been painting the War Between the States since 1980, Don Troiani's Civil War is the first book to collect this historical artist's work in one volume. Troiani is at his best in the battle paintings--his attention to detail and insistence on historical accuracy help him capture the valor and confusion of combat--but the book includes more bucolic depictions of camp life, as well. Brian Pohanka's accompanying text illuminates the stories behind the paintings. Continued below...
For example, he describes a famous episode from Second Manassas where Confederate soldiers ran out of bullets during a Union assault; the beleaguered Rebels resorted to throwing rocks at the Union lines. Troiani captures this desperate action magnificently... "Don Troiani is unsurpassed at recreating, with absolute fidelity, the decisive moments of great battles." --Stephen W. Sears, author of Chancellorsville. "Don Troiani probably knows more about how Civil War soldiers looked and were equipped than anyone else since the veterans themselves. His paintings are unparalleled in evoking Civil War military culture both on the battlefield and in camp." --Gary W. Gallagher, author of The Confederate War.
 
South Carolina State Flag: Presented to 2nd South Carolina Cavalry Regiment
Courtesy of the Texas Civil War Museum
(Click to Enlarge)

Original Civil War Flag.jpg

Confederate Battle Flag.jpg

Private William B. Royal, Company C, Thirty-eighth North Carolina Infantry Regiment
Although shot above the heart, he survived
Courtesy of the Texas Civil War Museum
(Click to Enlarge)

Confederate Soldier Uniform.jpg

Confederate Uniform.jpg

Pieces of the U.S.S. Harriet Lane
Courtesy of the Texas Civil War Museum
(Click to Enlarge)

Civil War Ship.jpg

Confederate Ship.jpg

General "Burnside Carbine"
Courtesy of the Texas Civil War Museum
(Click to Enlarge)

Burnside Carbine.jpg

Burnside Carbine.jpg

Confederate Civil War Hat (Kepi)
Courtesy North Carolina Museum of History
(Click to Enlarge)

Confederate Hat Civil War.jpg

This kepi is one of several artifacts associated with Colonel John R. Lane. The gold braid on the hat indicates Lane's rank as an officer and there is a gilded button with the North Carolina coat of arms on each side. Lane was born in Chatham County in 1835. His Confederate service began in May 1861 and he quickly rose in rank from private to colonel. After assuming command of the 26th North Carolina Infantry Regiment on July 1, 1863, at Gettysburg, Lane was immediately wounded. Lane managed to survive the war despite a series of wounds. He returned to Chatham County after the war where he became a successful farmer and businessman. He died in 1908.
 
Sergeant Zacharia Harper, Company D, 27th North Carolina Infantry Regiment: Slouch Hat
Courtesy of the Texas Civil War Museum
(Click to Enlarge)

Civil War Hat.jpg

Confederate Hat.jpg

Abraham Lincoln's Gettsburg Address: it is one of Lincoln's five originals. (Part I)

Courtesy of Cornell University

(Click to Enlarge)

Original Gettysburg Address.jpg

Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address: it is one of Lincoln's five originals. (Part II)

Courtesy of Cornell University

(Click to Enlarge)

The Gettysburg Address.jpg

Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address Envelope

Courtesy of Cornell University

(Click to Enlarge)

Abraham Lincoln Signature.jpg

Telegram from Maj. Gen. William T. Sherman to President Abraham Lincoln, presenting the city of Savannah as a Christmas gift, December 22, 1864.
Courtesy the National Archives and Records Administration
(Click to Enlarge)

Original Abraham Lincoln Letter.jpg

*The Texas Civil War Museum opened to the public in January 2006 and is the largest American Civil War museum west of the Mississippi River. Everyone is highly encouraged to visit the museum. There are more than 3,000 artifacts and 60 flags which rotate on exhibit. It hosts a wonderful collection of regimental and brigade flags, muskets, rifles, pistols, sabers, and dozens of Victorian dresses. Its inventory is one of the best, photography allowed, and the museum exhibits definitely cater to all visitors.

Recommended Reading: The Soldier's View: The Civil War Art of Keith Rocco (Hardcover). Description: A splendid collection of more than 100 paintings and sketches from one of the leading artists working in the Civil War field. The text features carefully selected eye-witness accounts that accompany the paintings, and the result is a moving ensemble of images and words that pays homage to the common soldier. Rocco's oils are reproduced here on acid-free, heavy art paper and placed in a finely sewn binding. "This art is as graphic than the most gripping Civil War photo or picture that I have ever viewed."

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Recommended Reading: The Civil War Paintings of Mort Kunstler, Vol. 1: Fort Sumter to Antietam (Hardcover). Description: For nearly thirty years, Mort Künstler has focused his considerable artistic talent on interpreting the Civil War. In crafting his work to reflect poignant moments or critical circumstances of the conflict, he has turned to leading historians and scholars—such as Henry Steele Commager, James McPherson, William C. Davis, and James I. Robertson Jr.—for informative details that he has then translated on canvas to create an indelible image of this defining ordeal in America's history. More than 160 of these images—supplemented by preliminary sketches, early studies, and photographs of works in progress—are the basis for these four volumes. Continued below…

Künstler has also explored the human side of this national struggle. Thus he has produced thoughtful studies of leaders at decisive moments, instances of daily camp life for the soldiers, and those early romantic notions that it would be a bloodless war, predicated on the belief that a show of inner strength would prevail. Historian James I. Robertson Jr. recently noted, "Among the handful who truly sense the human, indelible element of that war is Mort Künstler. That alone goes far in explaining why he is the premier Civil War artist of our time, if not of all time. ...His subjects are always widely appealing to the eye and to the mind. [He] pursues accuracy to an extent that would make some historians blush." In the past twenty years, Künstler's portfolio has been published in twelve books, including companion pieces for the epic films Gettysburg and Gods and Generals. These paintings are reproduced here along with a lively history of the war. About the Author: Mort Künstler is the reigning dean of American historical artists. No other artist has illustrated so many events in American history with such authenticity and drama, from cave-dwelling Native Americus to the space program. He has had numerous one-man exhibitions at galleries such as the Hammer Galleries in New York City; he also was the subject of a one-hour special on A&E Network's Time Machine. His previous books include Images of the Civil War, Gettysburg, Jackson and Lee, and The Civil War Art of Mort Künstler. He lives in Oyster Bay, New York.

 

Recommended Reading: Civil War Paintings of Mort Kunstler: Vol. 2: Fredericksburg to Gettysburg. Description: "Kunstler, one of the premier painters of the American past, creates vividly detailed, dramatically realistic depictions of battlefields, officers, campsites, townsfolk, other players and decisive moments in this second volume of a planned four-part series that will eventually cover the entire span of the War Between the States. His brushstrokes blend history and humanity into pieces of masterful artwork that almost fool your eyes into thinking they're photographs." --Neil Pond, American Profile Magazine, July 2007. Continued below...

For nearly thirty years, Mort Kunstler has focused his considerable talent on interpreting the Civil War. In crafting his work to reflect poignant moments or critical instances of the conflict, he has turned to leading historians and scholars -- such as Henry Steele Commager, James McPherson, William C. Davis, and James I. Robertson Jr. -- for informative details that he has then translated on canvas to create an indelible image of this defining ordeal in America's history. More than 160 of these images -- supplemented by preliminary sketches, early studies, and photographs of works in progress -- are the basis for the four volumes in this series. Kunstler has also explored the human side of this national struggle. Thus, he has produced thoughtful studies of leaders at decisive moments, instances of daily camp life for the soldiers, and those early romantic notions that it would be a bloodless war, predicated on the belief that a show of inner strength would prevail. Historian James I. Robertson Jr. recently noted, "Among the handful who truly sense the human, indelible element of that war is Mort Kunstler. That alone goes far in explaining why he is the premier Civil War artist of our time, if not all time. His subjects are widely appealing to the eye and to the mind. [He] pursues accuracy to an extent that would make some historians blush." In the past twenty years, Kunstler’s portfolio has been published in twelve books, including companion pieces for the epic films Gettysburg and Gods and Generals. These paintings are reproduced here along with a lively history of the war.

 

Recommended Reading: The Civil War Paintings of Mort Kunstler, Vol. 3: The Gettysburg Campaign (Hardcover). Midwest Book Review: For nearly thirty years Mort Kunstler has used his art to tell stories of the Civil War, capturing daily life of soldiers and leaders alike: this third volume pairs color photo reproductions of his Civil War paintings with discussions of events, making for a hard-hitting survey bringing alive the Gettysburg Campaign experience for both general-interest and military libraries alike. Many an art library, especially those including military and war art, will also consider it a powerful addition. Continued below…

For nearly thirty years Mort Kunstler has used his art to tell stories of the Civil War, capturing daily life of soldiers and leaders alike: this third volume pairs color photo reproductions of his Civil War paintings with discussions of events, making for a hard-hitting survey bringing alive the Gettysburg Campaign experience for both general-interest and military libraries alike. Many an art library, especially those including military and war art, will also consider it a powerful addition. For nearly thirty years, Mort Kunstler has focused his considerable artistic talent on interpreting the Civil War. In crafting his work to reflect poignant moments or critical instances of the conflict, he has turned to leading historians and scholars -- such as Henry Steele Commager, James McPherson, William C. Davis, and James I. Robertson Jr. -- for informative details that he has then translated on canvas to create an indelible image of this defining ordeal in America's history. More than 160 of these images -- supplemented by preliminary sketches, early studies, and photographs of works in progress -- are the basis for the four volumes in this series. Kunstler has also explored the human side of this national struggle. Thus he has produced thoughtful studies of leaders at decisive moments, instances of daily camp life for the soldiers, and those early romantic notions that it would be a bloodless war, predicated on the belief that a show of inner strength would prevail. Historian James I. Robertson Jr. recently noted, "Among the handful who truly sense the human, indelible element of that war is Mort Kunstler. That alone goes far in explaining why he is the premier Civil War artist of our time, if not of all time....His subjects are always widely appealing to the eye and to the mind. [He] pursues accuracy to an extent that would make some historians blush." In the past twenty years, Kunstler's portfolio has been published in twelve books, including companion pieces for the epic films Gettysburg and Gods and Generals. These paintings are reproduced here along with a lively history of the war.

 

Recommended Reading: The Civil War Paintings of Mort Kunstler, Volume 4: Gettysburg to Appomattox (Hardcover). Review: The collection of paintings about the American Civil War by Mort Kunstler is one of the best educational aids in history and art ever created. His attention to detail is just short of obsessive, yet the consequences are true national treasures. When he has made the decision to paint a specific scene, he consults all available images, views all remaining artifacts, travels to the site if possible, observes the terrain, examines the records of the weather of the day if applicable and reads all available written accounts. Continued below…

In this, the fourth and final book in the series, the images are from the aftermath of the climactic battle at Gettysburg to the surrender of Lee at Appomattox. Like the previous three volumes, there is an emphasis on General Lee and his opponents, although the campaign of General Sherman is included. For each image, Kunstler gives a textual description of the event he is depicting, the role it had in the war and often partitions the image into sections for emphasis. On many occasions, he also describes the overall structure of the painting and the techniques he used to emphasize the points he wanted highlighted. This book could be used as a text in history as it shows a great deal of what the soldiers of the American Civil War experienced. It would also be an excellent selection as a text for courses in the proper ways to paint an image. For nearly thirty years, Mort Künstler has focused his considerable artistic talent on interpreting the Civil War through his paintings. In doing so, he has turned to leading historians and scholars for information that he has then translated on canvas to create an indelible image of this defining ordeal in America's history. More than 160 of those images--supplemented by preliminary sketches, early studies, and photographs of works in progress--are the basis for the four volumes in this series. Volume 4 follows the course of the war from the battle of Gettysburg (July 1-3, 1863) through the end of the war at Appomattox (April 9, 1865). The march through Virginia and into Tennessee and Georgia, culminating at the battle of Chickamauga, the Atlanta campaign, the battles of Franklin and Nashville, Sherman's March to the Sea, the North's rampage through South Carolina, and battles through North Carolina all ended in a parlor in a house at an obscure railroad crossroads. In addition to portraying scenes from the conflict, Künstler also explores the human side of the struggle. Thus he has produced thoughtful studies of leaders at decisive moments, instances of daily camp life for the soldiers, and the emotional state of civilians and soldiers North and South as the war ground to its end.

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