The Civil War… 150 years ago today… June 8, 1861

June 8, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

We continue our weekly feature of reflecting upon the appropriate 150 year old issue of “Harper’s Weekly” from the perspective of a subscriber in 1861:

The front page (of the June 8, 1861 issue) has a great print of the “Uniforms of the Fifth Regiment N.Y. Vols…” showing them in garb with very baggy trousers and interesting headgear. I never fail to be amazed at the variety of uniforms worn during the war! Had “Harper’s Weekly” never existed I would not have known of this fascinating variety. There is another nice full page on the “Zouave” soldiers, showing four scenes of “Ellsworth’s Zouaves” in camp, showing them relaxing by their tents, “Getting Rations” and “Cooking Dinner” among other scenes.

Another one of the great map is found in the centerfold, this one being simply terrific! It shows much of Eastern portion of the United States south of Baltimore including the cities of Baltimore, Washington, Richmond, Raleigh Savannah and even the Florida peninsula. It is a somewhat three-dimensional rather than topographical map, showing the dramatic cliffs of the Potomac River near Harper’s Ferry. I’ll keep this map handy as I read of war events in the daily newspapers.

Many more war-related prints are inside, including a nice full page of “Sherman’s Battery of Light Artillery”. This print has a nice print of one of the cannons used in the war.