News-Antique.com - Apr 04,2008 - April 4, 2008--When the smoke cleared and the sun finally came up more than 22,000 Union and Confederate soldiers were killed, wounded or captured in the Civil War battle at Antietam Creek in 1862.
Gen. Stonewall Jackson’s aide described the site as a field of blood. He said he could feel his horse trembling under him as the animal looked down at the ground in terror. Afraid to stand still, hesitating to go on, the horse’s instinct simply froze at the site of so much human carnage.
Both armies were worn and marched out. Every farmyard and haystack had become a hospital. News of the slaughter spread fast. Families showed up hoping to find their loved ones alive or claim their dead.
Lincoln decided to visit the battlefield in person and hear the details of the recent fight.
The troops were camped near Harper’s Ferry in Maryland. Lincoln arrived and toured the battlefield for four days. Dressed in his black suit and high plug hat Lincoln passed through the lines, reviewed the troops and never said a word. One soldier described him as having a kindly, anxious face, furrowed with care and anxiety.
Photographer Alexander Gardner was also at Antietam taking pictures of the dead. A few weeks later he exhibited his work at the New York gallery of his employer Mathew Brady. For the first time in history the American public looked at photos of corpses. The war now had a face.
On Dec 1, Heritage Auction Galleries featured a selection of vintage Civil War photos and other assorted items in its Important Civil War Auction. An Alexander Gardner albumen image of Lincoln at Antietam, Oct. 1862, 9 inches by 6.75 inches, sold for $19,120.
Read the entire article at http://www.LiveAuctionTalk.com