Civil War Treasures
Before, During and After
the Civil War.

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This selection of images is intended to serve as a chronological overview of the war as depicted in items from the Civil War collections at the New-York Historical Society. The variety of materials in the collections represented here provides a complex look at the war, from both the Union and Confederate points of view, by artists and observers of many types.

Before the Civil War | Next

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John Brown's fort, Harper's Ferry from Md. Hts., by W.M. Chase, ca. 186-
Before the Civil War, John Brown became, in the eyes of many, a martyr to the cause of freedom for the slaves when he was captured after the raid at Harper's Ferry.

Although South Carolina, followed by six other states, seceded from the Union in January of 1861, many months of tension followed before Fort Sumter was fired upon on April 12, 1861, igniting the conflict.

Troops were dispatched to defend Washington, D.C. As troops from Massachusetts and Pennsylvania crossed Baltimore from one railroad station to another, citizens of the city who viewed them as invaders attacked the soldiers.

A request came for militia to mobilize, and mass meetings in support of the Union were held in the north.

The call to arms was taken seriously. Less than a week after the shelling of Fort Sumter, this Pennsylvanian was ready to sell his goods and head south.

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Published by William Kachline, and printed by W.W. H. Davis
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"Fort Sumter in April 1861 after Anderson evacuated." Blauvelt & Hubbard's Photographic Gallery, photographers, 1861
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"Battle in Baltimore April 19th, 1861," from Confederate War Etchings, by Adalbert Johann Volck, 1863
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"Anthony's instantaneous views, the great union meeting in Union Square, New- York, April 20, 1861. The gathering numbers fill the streets and crown the house tops with crowds of civilians," E. & H.T. Anthony, publishers, 1861

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