Civil War Images

CWI 1. Half Plate Tintype of 2nd Lieutenant James Conley, Co. F 69th NC Vol. Infantry (Thomas’ Legion) CSA.

This killer image is super clear and professionally tinted. You can clearly see the engraving on his sword and the details on his North Carolina State Seal Buttons. The sword is an early type, possibly handed down through Conley’s family. Here is an excerpt from from the Regimental History of “Thomas’ Legion of Indians and Highlanders”;

 This independent command initially reported directly to Brig. Gen. Henry Heth and provided invaluable service in the defense of vital and strategic railroads, bridges and depots. Whereas the legion would spend a significant part of the conflict defending the sole railroad in East Tennessee, it was a rather thankless and monotonous task and one that would never grace the headlines. But on the other hand, when the Union army downed a bridge or tore up much track in the Volunteer State, it was front page news. While the command was frequently tasked with tenuous provost duties, it often found itself engaged with guerrillas, bushwhackers, and an ever emboldened Union foe. In May 1864 the regiment of the legion was detached and moved to Virginia to participate in Lt. Gen. Jubal Early’s Shenandoah Valley Campaigns before returning to North Carolina. The legion would fight skirmishes and battles in Tennessee, North Carolina, West Virginia, Virginia, and as far north as Maryland, and would surrender at Waynesville, North Carolina, on May 9, 1865. Legions were rare and few rose to prominence, such as Phillip’s Georgia Legion, Wade Hampton’s Legion of South Carolina, and William Thomas’ Legion of the Old North State.
This organization initially totaled 1,125 men, but would soon consist of an infantry regiment, two battalions, one of white and the other of Cherokee, two companies of miners and sappers, and an artillery battery, which would be added on April 1, 1863. Levi’s Light Artillery Battery, aka Louisiana Tigers or Barr’s Battery, formerly served in the Virginia State Line Artillery before joining the ranks of the Thomas Legion. During the conflict, the unit would muster more than 2,500 officers and men, including the 400 Indians which formed the Cherokee Battalion. The size of this command varied however, as some of its companies were transferred to other units to meet the exigencies of war. But the legion would gain Companies A and L of the battle-hardened 16th North Carolina, a regiment that had served under the likes of Lee and Jackson. Unlike any given regiment consisting of some 1100 soldiers, the Thomas Legion, which on a few occasions fielded some 2,500 strong, was a much larger fighting force and it resembled a brigade. While this unit was never officially designated the 69th North Carolina Regiment, there are 75 references to Thomas’ Legion in the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies. (Hereinafter cited as O.R.)
Thomas’ Legion of Indians and Highlanders, commonly referred to as the 69th North Carolina Regiment, was officially organized by William Holland Thomas on September 27, 1862, at Knoxville, Tennessee. While its members were recruited predominantly from the Western North Carolina counties of Haywood, Jackson, and Cherokee, East Tennessee also supplied men for the unit.

I have yet to research Conley’s Service Record and do not know if he survived the war. This is an outstanding Confederate Image. Possibly taken in Knoxville when the unit was organized. Original leatherette case is intact but has separated along the spine.



CWI 2. 6th Plate Ambrotype of a Young Confederate Lieutenant.

This clear image shows a youthful, unidentified Confederate Lieutenant brandishing what appears to be a Leech and Rigdon Foot Officer’s Sword. His Sword Knot is tinted red. Note the rare rounded loop, two piece concentric wreath Star Belt Buckle. This belt rig is associated with Mississippi and Texas Troops and was produced by an unknown New Orleans firm, possibly Hyde and Goodrich. This is a stunning Confederate Ambrotype with great content. Ex. Steve Mullinax Collection.



CWI 3. Large Half Plate Ambrotype of a Mississippi Private.

Half Plate Confederate images are rarely encountered. The unidentified soldier in this image is wearing two rows of Mississippi Infantry Buttons, at least three of which you can make out with a loupe. The leatherette covering on the case has seen better days. This is a remarkable Confederate Image.



CWI 4. 9th Plate Ruby Ambrotype of a Confederate Infantryman.

Very likely a member of Virginia’s “Cumberland Guards” as there is an identified image in a private collection with same uniform from this unit. This image is unidentified but is super clear. Note “C G” letters on kepi and M-1842 Musket he is brandishing. Housed in original leatherette case.



 CWI 5. Double Armed Confederate 6th Plate Ruby Ambrotype from Georgia.

Recently purchased from an Atlanta area family, this mean looking dude is brandishing an 1820’s era Cavalry Saber and small caliber Lefaucheux Revolver. If anyone out there has seen this style of uniform on an identified subject, we might be able to deduce what unit he was in. I have seen other Georgia images remarkably similar to this. Please feel free to reach out to me with information or informed opinions. This is a great looking Confederate Image, fresh “out of the woods”.



CWI 6. Crystal clear Quarter Plate Ambrotype of a Connecticut Militia Officer.

Killer image. Scratched on the back of a metal protective plate behind the glass is “1861 MAY”. This image is quite remarkable for it’s large size, sharpness and clarity. You can clearly see the Connecticut State Militia Buttons on his coat. He sports a very handsome and confident look and holds a US M-1850 Foot Officer’s Sword in his lap. Perhaps someone out there can identify this soldier. Flawless thermoplastic case.



CWI 7. 6th Plate Ruby Ambrotype of Assistant Surgeon John W. Addison, CSN.

Confederate Navy Images are hard to come by, especially in this condition and clarity. My consignor has done exhaustive research on this soldier and has deduced that he is none other than the officer mentioned twice in the new Confederate Navy Book “Rebel Reefers”. There is some slight discrepancy in the name as written in the book and the signature we have written in the case but the evidence shows that this is our man. Addison was a Maryland Confederate. I haven’t the time to research this soldier more completely. Any additional info would be appreciated as I know a lot of my clients and colleagues have access to superior sources and take pleasure in the research.




 CWI 8. Large Identified Portrait of a Georgia Confederate.

This type of portrait was made from an original hard image in the later 1800’s. Condition is very good. Our subject is identified on the back as “Green Tillman McGuire” of “Douglas County, GA. Born March 15, 1826 and died Sept. 4, 1898”. McGuire is holding a big Confederate D-Guard Bowie over his shoulder which makes this image quite remarkable. A cursory look at his record indicates that he was in Co. A, 12th GA. Vol. Infantry Regt. (Doles Cook Brigade). He was disabled by a Yankee Shell at Gettysburg and discharged due to deafness. Here is a link to McGuire on the Paulding County SCV site:—m/green-tilman-mcguire  I photographed it without the glass due to glare issues. This image was turned up by Steve Mullinax in his local area (Villa Rica) in 1968.



CWI 9. 6th Plate Ruby Ambrotype of an Alabama Private.

Very clear image of a very young Confederate Private brandishing a Colt Navy Revolver and M-1832 Short Artillery Sword. Image has minor specks. Purchased last week from a Piedmont (Cross Plains) Alabama Family by the name of Doss. That is all the info I have.



CWI 10. 6th Plate Ruby Ambrotype of a young Confederate Private.

Super clear image in it’s original leatherette case. This boyish looking fellow may be a South Carolina soldier as his uniform is similar to several identified SC images. You can clearly see the freckles on his face.



 CWI 11. Quarter Plate Tintype of a Federal Infantryman.

Unarmed and unidentified but still a very clear photo of a young private. Housed in it’s original half leatherette case.