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A Nation Divided.  The Civil War in contemporary prints
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The Civil War: Portraits


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Winfield Scott
"Winfield Scott. Lieut. General, Commanding U.S. Army." New York: Charles Magnus, 1858. Two tone lithograph. Oval portrait, ca. 15 1/4 x 13. Very good condition.

Though first issued just before the war, this portrait shows Scott, Commander in Chief of the U.S. Army, as he was at the beginning of the conflict. Though he did not play a very active role in the war, his image as America's military leader was very important through the war, and so portraits such as this would have graced many homes at the time. $250

Maj Gen McClellan
Waterman Lily Ormsby. "Maj. Gen. Geo. B. M'Clellan, Late Commanding United States Army." Second state. New York: [Joseph Lang], ca. 1862-63. 22 1/4 x 16 7/8. Steel engraving by W.L. Ormsby. Some staining in margins and faint water stain upper left corner just into plate mark; all not affecting image. Else, very good condition.

A handsome, full length portrait of George McClellan mounted on a horse in full uniform. The image was drawn and engraved by W.L. Ormsby, who issued a number of historical images around the middle of the century. This is a second state of this print, which has "Late" added to the title. This shows that the print was original issued when McClellan was commanding the army, but was reissued, with the addition, even after he had been dismissed in early 1862. A fort and some troops can be seen in the background. Both states of this portrait were engraved so that the head of McClellan was transferred onto an 1852 portrait of Gen. Franklin Pierce done during the Mexican War. See Milton Kaplan, "Heads of State" in Winterthur Portfolio 6: 1970: 135-44. $350

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Frank Leslie's: Lieut-Gen Grant
"Lieut.-Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, U. S. A." From Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper. New York: March 19, 1864. 20 1/4 x 14. Wood engraving. Very good condition.

A timely newspaper image of Grant soon after his promotion from Major General to Lieutenant General. $275

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Currier & Ives and Contemporaries:

John C Frémont
"John C. Frémont. Aj. Genl. U.S.A." Cincinnati: Ehrgott & Forbriger, ca. 1861. Lithograph. Vignette, ca. 12 1/2 x 9 1/2. Very good condition.

The Cincinnati lithographic firm of Ehrgott & Forbriger issued a fascinating series of portraits. They issued seventy-nine different prints of sixty-nine different Union politicians and officers. but they shared just a small group of backgrounds, so the same horse and body might appear with a number of different heads or the same body on a ship would house different visages. This print shows Frémont when he was still popular, perhaps during period he was Commander of the Department of the West. $275
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"Commodore Farragut. U.S. Navy." Cincinnati: Ehrgott & Forbriger, ca. 1862. Lithograph. Vignette, ca. 12 1/2 x 9 1/2.

Another Ehrgott & Forbridger print, this of Commodore Farragut, the background of which is almost exactly the same as a number of other portraits. $325
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Balling: Heroes of the Republic
Ole Peter Hansen Balling (1823-1906). [Heroes of the Republic]. (General Grant and his Generals). New York: Ferdinand Mayer and Sons, 1867. 22 7/8 x 35 3/8. Chromolithograph. Margins trimmed to image and mounted on canvas. Numerous small areas of printed surface cracking and flaking on print edges with some in image, stabilized as best as possible, with some inpainting. Expect continued flaking over time. Sold as is. Scarce. Ref: Union Image, p.185. $1,200

As the Civil War moved into its final stages in the fall of 1864, the Norwegian artist Ole Peter Hansen Balling conceived of the idea for a large equestrian painting depicting the commander of the Union armies, Ulysses S. Grant, flanked by an array of generals who served under him. Upon completion, the painting would be used to raise funds for the United States Sanitary Commission, a private organization for aiding sick and wounded soldiers. To obtain likenesses of the twenty-seven figures in the picture, Balling traveled to Union army encampments to make life studies of his subjects. The final rendering of "Grant and His Generals," approached being life-sized. Balling also painted a smaller version, most likely to serve for the creation of this chromolithograph. Both paintings are in the National Portrait Gallery.

Generals depicted left to right: Thomas C. Devin; George A. Custer; Hugh J. Kilpatrick; William H. Emory; Philip H. Sheridan; James B. McPherson; George Crook; Wesley Merritt; George H. Thomas; Gouverneur Kemble Warren; George G. Meade; John G. Parke; William T. Sherman; John A. Logan; Ulysses S. Grant; Ambrose E. Burnside; Joseph Hooker; Winfield Scott Hancock; John A. Rawlins; Edward O. C. Ord; Francis Preston Blair; Alfred H. Terry; Henry W. Slocum; Jefferson C. Davis; Oliver O. Howard; John M. Schofield; Joseph A. Mower.

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