Monday, May 9, 2011

150th Anniversary of the beginning of the Civil War

One hundred and fifty years ago this spring, our country was in a period of tremendous turmoil. In December of the previous year, South Carolina had seceded from the Union, prompting the headline seen in my colored pencil painting at the top, The Union is Dissolved! Other states would follow their lead in the coming months, and by mid-summer, eleven states had joined the Confederacy, demonstrated by the flag depicted in the painting. Preparations for war were begun in earnest, and the Confederate volunteer depicted is wearing a uniform typical of some of the early regiments that were formed in the South. In response to the attack on Fort Sumter, where an unusual version of the American flag as portrayed in my second painting, To Arms! had come under severe fire and was taken down by the Confederate victors, President Abraham Lincoln issued an immediate call for 75,000 troops from those states loyal to the Union, to put down the rebellion. The Union states were quick to respond and in fact offered many more volunteers than Lincoln had requested.

The two paintings were created to be companions to each other but reveal an important difference between the two armies: while the Confederacy had every bit as much passion for its cause as the Union, it lacked the numbers of available troops, a factor which would become critical as the War progressed. These two large paintings are prominently displayed in the entrance hallway to my gallery, Civil War Fine Art, located at 333 Baltimore Street in Gettysburg, PA, and will greet visitors during the History Meets the Arts event this June 16 - 18.

To see more of my Civil War-related colored pencil paintings, please visit my website at

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