FRAMED PORTRAIT OF A MEMBER OF THE ANDERSON TROOP, 15th PA CAVALRY

$950.00

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Item Code: 945-370

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This is a period pen and ink sketch with a watercolor wash that is likely based on a crayon portrait or solar enlargement, a technique using a photograph to produce a more formal looking artist’s portrait that could be displayed on a wall.  It has been professionally matted and reframed, ready to hang once again.  The frame measures 22 ¼” x 25 ½”, and the sketch measures 8 ½” x 14 ½”.

The background appears to have been a studio backdrop and the soldier has placed the patent folding brim hat characteristically worn by the unit atop a chair, showing off its crossed sabers and “AT,” “Anderson Troop,” insignia and hat cord. The soldier is shown at parade rest, with his hands folded on the muzzle of his carbine. A cavalry saber is at his side. A saber sling hangs down from his belt and what looks like the hilt of a knife protrudes from his belt. He wears a mounted services jacket with shoulder scales, gauntlets, and high boots. The artist has helpfully added “USA” to his rectangular belt plate.

The Anderson Troop was an independent cavalry company raised in Pennsylvania in the Fall of 1861 under special authority of the War Department to serve as escort and headquarters guard for General Robert Anderson in Kentucky. They were considered elite, having to be nominated for membership and vowing to abstain from alcohol. They were subsequently attached to the headquarters of Buell and of Rosecrans, and saw active service as orderlies and scouts in the campaigns of Shiloh, Corinth, Springfield and Perryville. Their senior officers, however, had been detached to recruit the unit up to battalion strength and their efforts were so successful they recruited a new regiment, the 15th Pennsylvania cavalry, which became Rosecrans’ guard and into which about one third of the old troop (and about two thirds of its officers and NCOs) transferred. Those remaining in the troop were allowed to muster out in March 1863.

We can’t know whether the trooper in the photo was one of those who went into the 15th or served in another unit after his service in the Anderson Troop, but he was proud enough of his service in the unit to have this portrait done showing him in its uniform for visitors and family.  [sr]

Please note: this frame contains glass; click here for our policy for shipment of framed items containing glass.

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