CRYSTAL CLEAR HALF-PLATE TINTYPE OF AN ARTILLERY SECOND LIEUTENANT

$395.00 SOLD

Quantity Available: None

Item Code: 1054-153

Tintypes usually lose clarity as they increase in size. This one is a nice half-plate size that has great clarity and detail to boot. The subject is a handsome second lieutenant shown from mid-chest up. He wears a regulation line officer’s frock coat with the upper buttons fastened and the lower ones open to show smaller vest buttons beneath, and an officer’s forage cap pushed back slightly so as not to obscure his face. The embroidered cross-cannons of an artillery officer’s hat insignia on the front of the cap show clearly. (The brim of his cap runs across the lower portion of the cannon barrels, but there is no doubt about them.) The photographer has delicately tinted red the officer’s cheeks and lips, and given a darker tone of red to the interiors of his shoulder straps. The officer was likely posed in front of a painted backdrop, but the photographer (and sitter) decided to move close up and focus on him to produce a stronger portrait. (A slight blur in the right background is likely part of the painted scene they chose not to use.) In the Civil War artillery frequently was engaged in the front lines of battle, lieutenants supervising “sections” of two guns. This officer certainly looks like he knew his business.

The image comes in its original half-plate size leatherette hinged case and cover with its decorative floral mat, frame, and glass in place. The condition is excellent. We see just a tiny speck of emulsion loss at upper right from wear by the mat. The size and clarity of the image would give it prominence in any photography or artillery display.  [sr]

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