Photograph of an African American Civil War soldier with his family

Title

Photograph of an African American Civil War soldier with his family

Subject

African American soldiers; African Americans; Portrait photography; American Civil War (1861-1865)

Description

Black and white quarter-plate ambrotype photograph showing an African American Union soldier in uniform, wife in dress and hat, and two daughters wearing matching coats and hats. The soldier was originally unidentified but may be Sergeant Samuel Smith of the 119th United States Colored Infantry. In May 1863, U.S. Secretary of War Edwin Stanton issued General Order No. 143 creating the Bureau of U. S. Colored Troops. This image was found in Cecil County, Maryland, making it likely that this soldier belonged to one of the seven USCT regiments raised in Maryland. (Source: Matthew R. Gross and Elizabeth T. Lewin, 2010) This is the only known photograph of an African American Union soldier with his family.

Source

Library of Congress

Publisher

United States Library of Congress's Prints and Photographs division

Date

1863-1865

Rights

This media file is in the public domain in the United States. This applies to U.S. works where the copyright has expired, often because its first publication occurred prior to January 1, 1924. See this page for further explanation.

Relation

Liljenquist Family Collection of Civil War Photographs (Library of Congress)

Original Format

photograph: quarter-plate ambrotype

Physical Dimensions

882 x 654 pixels

Files

00400v_crop.jpg

Citation

“Photograph of an African American Civil War soldier with his family,” SCRC Virtual Museum at Southern Illinois University's Morris Library, accessed December 2, 2022, https://scrcexhibits.omeka.net/items/show/764.

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