ca. 1860-80’s, [carte de visite portrait of a wounded Civil War veteran], Anson
via Carl Mautz Vintage Photography & Publishing, Carte de visites

ca. 1860-80’s, [carte de visite portrait of a wounded Civil War veteran], Anson

via Carl Mautz Vintage Photography & Publishing, Carte de visites

ca. 1861-65, “The Deserters Fate”, [Civil War-era carte de visite portrait of a Union soldier, killed for desertion, with a firing squad looming behind]

Robert I. Alotta’s Civil War Justice-Union Army Executions under Lincoln (1989), cites 276 military executions during the Civil War, 186 by firing squad and 90 by hanging. Multiple desertion was the leading cause with 147 soldiers formally executed in the name of deterrence.  

via  Cowan’s Auctions

ca. 1861-65, “The Deserters Fate”, [Civil War-era carte de visite portrait of a Union soldier, killed for desertion, with a firing squad looming behind]

Robert I. Alotta’s Civil War Justice-Union Army Executions under Lincoln (1989), cites 276 military executions during the Civil War, 186 by firing squad and 90 by hanging. Multiple desertion was the leading cause with 147 soldiers formally executed in the name of deterrence.

via Cowan’s Auctions

ca. 1865, “A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing, or Jeff in Crinoline”, [carte de visite of Jefferson Davis captured by Union soldiers], Philadelphia Photographic Company 
via the International Center for Photography, “President in Petticoats! Civil War Propaganda in Photographs” Exhibit

ca. 1865, “A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing, or Jeff in Crinoline”, [carte de visite of Jefferson Davis captured by Union soldiers], Philadelphia Photographic Company

via the International Center for Photography, “President in Petticoats! Civil War Propaganda in Photographs” Exhibit

ca. 1861-65, [hand-tinted tintype portrait of a Union soldier in uniform with shoulder scales with pearl-handled revolver and saber in front of backdrop showing trees and two Great Star flags] 
via the Library of Congress, Liljenquist Family Collection of Civil War Photographs

ca. 1861-65, [hand-tinted tintype portrait of a Union soldier in uniform with shoulder scales with pearl-handled revolver and saber in front of backdrop showing trees and two Great Star flags]

via the Library of Congress, Liljenquist Family Collection of Civil War Photographs

ca. 1885, [carte de visite of an elaborate photomontage composed of at least five different images, including a cavalry swordsman on wooden horse and a severed living head], Victor Coue
via Christopher Wahren Fine Photographs, Skylight Gallery Cataloge #35

ca. 1885, [carte de visite of an elaborate photomontage composed of at least five different images, including a cavalry swordsman on wooden horse and a severed living head], Victor Coue

via Christopher Wahren Fine Photographs, Skylight Gallery Cataloge #35

ca. 1861, [gilded, hand colored tintype portrait of two boys “playing war”, dressed in uniforms and standing in front of a amateurish, painted backdrop]
via Heritage Auctions

ca. 1861, [gilded, hand colored tintype portrait of two boys “playing war”, dressed in uniforms and standing in front of a amateurish, painted backdrop]

via Heritage Auctions

ca. 1860’s, [ambrotype portrait of three soldiers; one brandishing a knife and pistol, another a very serious demeanor, and the other a complacent grin and tinted cheeks]
via the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

ca. 1860’s, [ambrotype portrait of three soldiers; one brandishing a knife and pistol, another a very serious demeanor, and the other a complacent grin and tinted cheeks]

via the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

ca. 1860-1880’s, [tintype portrait of a smokey, wooded campsite, possibly a Union or Confederate encampment]
via Ebay

ca. 1860-1880’s, [tintype portrait of a smokey, wooded campsite, possibly a Union or Confederate encampment]

via Ebay

ca. 1850’s, [daguerreotype portrait of a gentleman soldier in Mexican war-era uniform]
via Cowan’s Auctions

ca. 1850’s, [daguerreotype portrait of a gentleman soldier in Mexican war-era uniform]

via Cowan’s Auctions

ca. 1860’s, [carte de visite portrait of Capt. Irving F. Wilcox, 1st Michigan and Veteran Reserve Corps, post injury], Matthew Brady 

Flowing ink inscription on verso reads, “Yours Truly/I F Wilcox/14th Regt. VRC.” Wilcox enlisted in the 1st Michigan as Company A. First Sergeant in July 1861 and was present at Gaines Mill where he was wounded. Promoted to 1st Lieutenant Wilcox fought at 2nd Bull Run where he lost his left eye. The young officer convalesced and became Adjutant of the 1st Michigan before joining the Veteran Reserve Corps in September 1863 rising to the rank of Captain when this photograph was taken. Notice the scars from the August 1862 wound as well as the replacement glass eye.

via Cowan’s Auctions

ca. 1860’s, [carte de visite portrait of Capt. Irving F. Wilcox, 1st Michigan and Veteran Reserve Corps, post injury], Matthew Brady

Flowing ink inscription on verso reads, “Yours Truly/I F Wilcox/14th Regt. VRC.” Wilcox enlisted in the 1st Michigan as Company A. First Sergeant in July 1861 and was present at Gaines Mill where he was wounded. Promoted to 1st Lieutenant Wilcox fought at 2nd Bull Run where he lost his left eye. The young officer convalesced and became Adjutant of the 1st Michigan before joining the Veteran Reserve Corps in September 1863 rising to the rank of Captain when this photograph was taken. Notice the scars from the August 1862 wound as well as the replacement glass eye.

via Cowan’s Auctions

ca. 1861-65, [hand-colored ambrotype portrait of a Confederate soldier in uniform with a cavalry sword and revolver] 
via the Library of Congress, Liljenquist Family Collection of Civil War Photographs

ca. 1861-65, [hand-colored ambrotype portrait of a Confederate soldier in uniform with a cavalry sword and revolver]

via the Library of Congress, Liljenquist Family Collection of Civil War Photographs

ca. 1852-55, [daguerreotype portrait of Edwin Stanton, with his son Edwin Lamson Stanton] 
via the Library of Congress, Daguerreotype Collection

ca. 1852-55, [daguerreotype portrait of Edwin Stanton, with his son Edwin Lamson Stanton]

via the Library of Congress, Daguerreotype Collection

ca. 1863, [albumen portrait of a gentleman in a chainmail tunic, posing as a dying soldier], Adrien Constant de Rebecque 
via the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photographs Collection

ca. 1863, [albumen portrait of a gentleman in a chainmail tunic, posing as a dying soldier], Adrien Constant de Rebecque

via the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photographs Collection

ca. 1861-65, [albumen print of the ruins at the end of the Richmond and Petersburg Railroad Bridge], Alexander Gardner
via the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photographs Collection

ca. 1861-65, [albumen print of the ruins at the end of the Richmond and Petersburg Railroad Bridge], Alexander Gardner

via the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photographs Collection

ca. 1861-65, [tintype portrait of a well-armed Union soldier with three Remington revolvers, two Bowie knives, and a Springfield rifle musket] 
via the Library of Congress, Liljenquist Family Collection of Civil War Photographs

ca. 1861-65, [tintype portrait of a well-armed Union soldier with three Remington revolvers, two Bowie knives, and a Springfield rifle musket]

via the Library of Congress, Liljenquist Family Collection of Civil War Photographs

"Until the handkerchief of history covers us with its Times New Roman black and white post script..."

This blog is a collection of vernacular photography and ephemera focused mainly within the curious and often misunderstood realm of 19th century America. I have a soft spot for all things silly, antiquated, macabre, and grotesque. The content is from a variety of collections; public, academic, and private. In addition, there's an occasional emphasis on Ulysses S Grant and the Civil War, as well.

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