Friday, August 14, 2009

Images; part 1

This will be the first post of several about the Civil War images I use on my website. Whenever possible I like to post an image to match the text on each page of my web history. The images help bring the history to life. I am fortunate to have 6 rare photographs of the 13th Regiment in camp at Williamsport, Maryland, the winter of 1861-1862. These photos were handed down in the family from my Great Great Grandfather, William Henry Forbush, who served in Company K, (from Westboro) for 1 and 1/2 years.

My images were created by George L. Crosby, a photographer from Marlboro. Crosby belonged to Company F of the 13th Mass. He set up his studio in camp that winter, and much of his work survives. I have often wondered if a large cache of his work is lying around in some Marlboro basement or attic still undiscovered. Those interested in the 13th Mass. are very fortunate. It can be extremely difficult to find images of men who served in other units. I have since learned from dealers and collectors of CW photographs that the 13th Mass. is considered a 'well photographed' regiment.

These collectors and dealers were very generous in sharing digital images with me, the true value is the actual image itself. One prominent Antietam collector shared 80 images of Company B men with me. Other images in my collection come from generous family members, descendants of the soldiers, and public and private libraries. At last count I had over 240 images of men from the regiment. A total of 1,758 men are listed in the roster of the 13th Mass., in the Massachusetts Adjutant General's report. About 200 of these never really served. (recruits that got sick and never made it to the field; deserters; draftees from the draft riots that immediately deserted, etc.)

I will post again on this subject; preparing the images for use on my website.

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