SIXTH PLATE TINTYPE OF SOLDIER WITH EARLY WHITE ACCOUTERMENT BELTS

$250.00

Quantity Available: 1

Item Code: 2021-780

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This sixth plate tintype shows a clean-shaven Union soldier in regulation infantry frock coat and flat-brimmed forage cap. He is seated in front of a plain backdrop and looks straight at the camera, with one hand in his lap and the other down at his side. He wears two white cross belts, one holding a bayonet and the other a cartridge box, and no waist belt.

Photography collectors often try to guess whether arms and equipment shown in a photo belong to the soldier, one of his comrades, or were supplied by the photographer for the occasion. In this case, the accoutrements include a bayonet shoulder belt that passed out of fashion in the regular army before the Mexican War. The cartridge box is seen only from the side and is a tougher call, but is likely the 1839 pattern, which overlapped for a time with the use of the bayonet belt and the use of white accouterment belts. Militia units sometimes used these quite late, but on the whole this looks very much like the photographer had some outdated gear handy for new soldiers interested in sending home photographs with a more warlike appearance. This fellow certainly looks new to the game. Getting a pass to town to visit the photographer might not be that difficult for a new soldier. Talking your way past a guard post with newly issued accouterments on was likely a different matter.

The image is housed in complete leatherette case with intact hinge. Mat, glass and frame are in place. This is a nice image that would pair well with a photo of a veteran soldier who had “seen the elephant” for contrast and to illustrate the Civil War soldier’s experience.  [sr] [ph:m]

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