BEFORE AND AFTER ENLISTING IN THE CONFEDERATE ARMY

$1,500.00

Quantity Available: 1

Item Code: 1138-1834

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This pair of sixth-plate ambrotypes is housed in a nice thermoplastic case with a geometric and floral border imitating a rustic frame, surrounding a scene of birds picking at a flowering plant. This comes from the collection of the late Bill Turner and contains on the left a mid-1850s images of a man with chin beard, bare-headed, and wearing a civilian coat over a vest, white shirt and black cravat/tie. His cheeks have been lightly tinted red, as has been a bit of the background, which seems plain at first, but may be a scenic backdrop kept out of focus to concentrate on the sitter. There is some minor spotting, but the figure is very clear. The mat is plain, with a simple oval opening with narrow dotted border.

On the right appears the same man, looking a few years older, but sporting the same hair style and beard. He is posed again in a half-length seated portrait, but this time wears a gray Confederate double-breasted frock coat, opened to show a gray military vest, also with brass buttons, opened slightly to show a white shirt and black tie. As in the other image his cheeks have been tinted slightly and the background is plain. The image has excellent clarity and resolution- enough to show a rather rough weave to his coat and that his buttons are simple eagle buttons. He looks a little thinner in this image, but still healthy and we might expect he has only recently joined the army. His thin tie, in contrast to the other image, probably reflects a change in fashion, as does the use of an embossed mat by the photographer. There is only a thin band of solarization along the edges of the mat.

This is a very nice pair of images, leaving one to wonder, of course, whether he survived to have a postwar photograph taken. Bill Turner was noted Virginia collector and dealer, making it likely the sitter was a Virginian.  [sr] [ph:m]

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