SIXTH PLATE AMBROTYPE OF A MILITIA OFFICER WITH SWORD AND PISTOL, LIKELY VIRGINIA

$3,950.00

Quantity Available: 1

Item Code: 1138-1980

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This member of a militia company has donned white gloves and shows off a Model 1850 foot officer’s sword for his portrait, but has left the rain cover on his kepi. He wears a light colored frock coat and trousers, likely gray, and is shown seated, from the knees up. The photographer has gilded parts of his uniform and the sword’s brass hilt and scabbard mounts, but some details are visible through the gold wash. He has left the sword sheathed, showing pretty clearly it has a black leather scabbard body. The photographer has touched up his epaulets, his collar trim, which looks like two false buttonholes with double rows of piping, a curving cuff chevron, three small buttons on his cuff and seven visible buttons down the front of his coat. There seems to be a broad trouser stripe he did not touch and the scabbard drag, visible at the top of the image was left alone.

To increase his martial appearance, our man has thrust a small pistol in his belt. The belt and what may be a sword sling hide the details, but the pistol shows a distinct swell at the base of the short grips and the belt seems to bulge out over a cylinder, suggesting a small pocket revolver. The sword and epaulets suggest he is a company officer. The kepi brings us close to 1860 in date.

The image is housed in a very good condition thermoplastic case with raised scrolls, crescents, and beads, along with a central oval panel with a finely done latticework center. The crimson facing pad is in place. The image is very clear, with good contrast, and the plate surface is excellent, showing just a few rubs on the edges. This comes from the collection of the late Bill Turner, noted Virginia collector and dealer. We have not identified the militia unit, but it is likely from Virginia, the focus of Bill’s collecting and the subject probably found himself in the field not long after the image was taken.    [sr] [ph:m]

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