Military Images

Research Rabbit Hole: Backdrop Business

A new episode of Research Rabbit Hole, our Facebook Live show, premiered Monday evening, May 3, at 9 p.m. ET.

Season 1, Episode 9, is focused on backdrops, one of the great clues to help trace the photographers who used them—and, with a little grit, determination, and luck, maybe identifying the unknown face looking back at you. But where did photographers get those backdrops? We’ll shed some light on this question.

The full season is available on YouTube.

New episodes of Research Rabbit Hole premier every two weeks on our Facebook page. The host, Ronald S. Coddington, is Editor and Publisher of Military Images.

Research Rabbit Hole: Glass Negative Greenhouses

A new episode of Research Rabbit Hole, our Facebook Live show, premiered Monday evening, March 9, at 9 p.m. ET.

Season 1, Episode 5, examines a persistent story about Civil War photographers who, long after the end of hostilities, sold glass plate negatives of battlefields, famous generals and Abraham Lincoln as scrap glass later used in greenhouses. They gradually faded away—ironically destroyed by the very sunlight responsible for image creation. The story has been told by many, including Ken Burns. Did photographer’s really sell their negatives?

The full season is available on YouTube.

New episodes of Research Rabbit Hole will be released every two weeks on our Facebook page. The host, Ronald S. Coddington, is Editor and Publisher of Military Images.

Blue, Gray & Khaki: Civil War Veterans and Doughboys

Last autumn, Military Images marked the centennial of World War I with a unique collection of images of Civil War veterans posed with Doughboys. In honor of their service, and as an ongoing part of our mission to showcase, interpret and preserve these old photos, we’re making this 11-page gallery available to you for free!
 

The Official Launch of Civil War Photo Sleuth

Kurt Luther, pictured here, in the moment he launched our Civil War Photo Sleuth software on August 1 in the Innovation Lab at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.

Kurt (head of CWPS), Ron Coddington (editor of Military Images magazine), and the rest of the team introduced guests throughout the day to the website to learn how to identify unknown Civil War photos, find photos of Civil War ancestors, and add identified photos to our reference database.

Attendees included Garry Adelman of the Civil War Trust and the Center for Civil War Photography, Melissa Winn of Civil War Times, Karen Chittenden from the Library of Congress and Tom Liljenquist, whose collection is part of the Library of Congress.

Images and live video of the event were carried on Facebook.

The response was overwhelmingly positive. CWPS is a historic moment for anyone interested in Civil War soldier and sailor photography.

Military Images Magazine at the Gettysburg Civil War Show

Join Military Images at the 45th Civil War Artifact and Collectibles Show in Gettysburg, Va. Stop by our table and bringing your best Civil War images—we’ll scan them free of charge and featured selected images in upcoming issues. We’ll be side-by-side with Kurt Luther and Civil War Photo Sleuth, a new website that uses technology and community to rediscover lost identities in American Civil War-era photographs. The show is sponsored by the Gettysburg Battlefield Preservation Association.

Event Details
45th Civil War Artifact and Collectibles Show
Eisenhower Hotel & Conference Center Allstar Expo Complex
2634 Emmitsburg Road
Gettysburg, PA 17325
Saturday, June 30, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Sunday, July 1, 9 a.m.–2 p.m.
Admission: Adults: $8. Children 12 and under free if accompanied by an adult.

July 1 Talk: Cardomania! The Rise and Fall of the Carte de Visite

The Civil War Generation was the first to grow up with photography. This transformative medium made it possible for Americans from all walks of life to preserve their own likeness, a privilege once reserved only for the wealthy. During photography’s early years, daguerreotypes, ambrotypes and tintypes ruled the portrait world. Then, on the eve of the Civil War, a curious new format landed in America—the carte de visite. After hostilities began, hundreds of thousands of citizen soldiers and sailors posed for their likenesses. Countless millions of photographs were produced. Significant numbers of these most intimate and personal artifacts survive today. Some are finding a place among the iconic images of the war. Join Ron Coddington, author of four books of collected Civil War portraits and editor and publisher of Military Images magazine, as he tells the story of the rise and fall of the carte de visite—and what became of them.

Also appearing at the event are our friends from Gettysburg Publishing, represented by Kevin Drake and several of his authors:

  • Mark H. Dunkelman
  • Cindy Small-Jennie Wade of Gettysburg
  • Patricia Rich
  • Scott Mingus, Sr
  • Bernadette Loeffel-Atkins
  • Lisa Shower

Event details:
Sunday, July 1, 5-6 p.m.
Gettysburg Heritage Center
297 Steinwehr Ave.
Gettysburg, PA 17325
No admission charge

For more information, visit:
http://www.gettysburgpublishing.com/upcoming-events.html
https://www.facebook.com/Gettysburgpublishing/
https://www.gettysburgmuseum.com/author–artist-events.html

Civil War Generals: The Poster

Oldfield Company presents a new poster featuring six Union and six Confederate generals with quotes that reveal their moving perspectives of the Civil War. This dynamic arrangement of images and quotations chillingly clarifies the realities of the great conflict. The quintessential quotation from each general includes their likeness and their years of birth and death.

Fittingly, the frames surrounding each subject are blue or gray, depending on their affiliation. 

The 24” x 36” dimension fits a standard frame size for economical framing.

Display this handsome print of military leaders of the Civil War on your home, office or classroom wall.

Posters are $25 each, plus $5 shipping and handling. For full purchase information, visit oldfieldcompany.com.

Here’s a look at each general and his quote.

 

Magazine on a Mission

You may have noticed content from our magazine in other Civil War publications. For example, The Civil War Monitor publishes an occasional series, Faces of War, based on images that have appeared in MI. The magazine of the Civil War Trust, Hallowed Ground, also includes an MI feature.

What is the sharing is all about? Aside from the obvious promotional efforts, there is a more substantial reason that is at the heart and soul of our magazine.

The reason is our mission—to showcase, interpret and preserve Civil War portrait photography. These unusual images are a relatively new to our eyes. For a century after the end of the war, the vast majority were hidden away in albums in attics and basements. A small number were published by veterans during their lifetimes in books and magazines—but they were relatively few compared to the overall number in existence.

Beginning the late 1950s and the 1960s, following Bruce Catton’s popular histories of the war, the centennial and the passing of the last living veterans, these singular portraits began to show up at flea markets, antique shops and other sales.

Today, they are highly collectible. And we’ve made it our mission to document as many as possible. We’ve been at this since 1979.

So, the next time you see a portrait of a Union or Confederate soldiers, remember them and their service. And also think about what MI is doing to keep their faces and stories alive.

Thank you!

The Winter 2015 Lineup: Noble Faces, Ugly Havelocks and a Hellion in Blue

03-p1-tocDelighted to announce the Table of Contents for the Winter 2015 issue. 60 pages of images include a feature gallery by longtime collector and MI contributor Brian Boeve, a gallery of flag bearers from another longtime contributor, Rick Carlile, a guide to the Havelock hat, “Ugly as the Devil,” by MI Senior Editor Ron Field, and “Hellion in Blue,” a wonderful profile of a New York officer.

You’ll also find all our regular departments and two debut departments—Photo Sleuth: Real life accounts on the research trail by Kurt Luther, and The Honored Few, which features Medal of Honor recipients.

If you like what you see, please take this opportunity to subscribe. The annual cost is $24.95 for four quarterly issues—240 pages of original images of citizen soldiers. MI needs your support, so please step forward and march with our army of core subscribers today!

Confederate Soldier, Family Slave

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One of the most unique Civil War images to surface in recent years is now part of the Liljenquist Family Collection at the Library of Congress. According to Tom Liljenquist, the sixth-plate tintype of Sgt. Andrew Martin Chandler of the 44th Mississippi Infantry and his family slave, Silas, was delivered to the Library this afternoon.

Liljenquist, accompanied by Chandler Battaile Jr., a descendent of Sgt. Chandler, were met by senior staff and other Library employees to receive the photo about 3 pm today.

The image has been a focus of attention since it was shown on PBS in a 2009 episode of Antiques Roadshow, and again in a 2011 segment of History Detectives. The photo has been put forth by some as proof that Silas was a “Black Confederate” who fought for the South, while others have provided primary research that establishes Silas was no more than a slave who served two of his master’s soldier sons during the war.

The Chandler story has been the subject of numerous books and articles. Battaile has requested that the version included in my 2012 book, African American Faces of the Civil War, be posted with the image on the Library’s site along with the image. I wrote another version that appeared as part of the New York Times Disunion series, “A Slave’s Service in the Confederate Army.”

The image included here was taken from a scan that I made from the original tintype with permission of Chandler Battaile Jr. in 2009.