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Estimate: $ 400 - $ 600
UNUSUAL ALBUM ASSEMBLED BY AN ABOLITIONIST (PHOTOGRAPHY.) Album of artfully arranged photographs compiled early in the war. 247 albumen photographs, various sizes but most about 1 inch round, mounted directly onto 56 album leaves. 8vo, original decorative calf gilt, worn, front board detached; 2 photographs removed and 3 others excised, otherwise minimal wear to contents; compiler's inked stamp on front free endpaper. [Schenectady, NY, circa 1861]
This volume, unusual for the period, is filled with small albumen photographs (most cut into ovals) mounted directly into the album rather than in carte-de-visite format. They are often artfully arranged, sometimes grouped around an image of a sculpture. Many are captioned in pencil. The album begins with a Union flag (clipped from a letterhead or patriotic cover), followed by the presidents through Lincoln (Washington having been removed), and then a variety of American political and military leaders past and present. The William Seward portrait may be unpublished. Lincoln appears three times: a small Cooper Union portrait reversed (Ostendorf O-17), another with the beard added, and finally a full carte-de-visite-sized Brady presidential image from February 1861 (O-52). Most of the Civil War leaders seem to date from very early in the war. Beyond the leaders of the day, the album also contains numerous small portraits of teachers and students, some identified by last name. One page of young women is captioned "Union School teachers." Another clue is a portrait signed by David Heagle of the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity, which he joined at Union College in Schenectady, NY as a member of the Class of 1859. The album bears the stamp of Horace G. Day (1819-1904), a well-known abolitionist minister from Schenectady. Provenance: collection of George Rinhart.
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