Mar 26, 2015 - Sale 2377

Sale 2377 - Lot 399

Price Realized: $ 30,000
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 7,500 - $ 10,000
(MILITARY--PHOTOGRAPHY.) KIMBALL, M.H. Emancipated Slaves brought from Louisiana by Col. Geo. H. Hanks. The Children are from Schools established by order of Maj. Gen. Banks. Oval albumen photograph, 5-1/4 x 7-3/4 inches, on the original 8 x 10 inch photographer's mount. New York: M. H. Kimball, 1863

Additional Details

a fine example of this rare iconic image. "The group of emancipated slaves whose portraits I send you were brought by Colonel Hanks and Mr. Phillip Bacon from New Orleans, where they were set free by General Butler. Mr. Bacon went to New Orleans with our army" (from the letter accompanying a copy of this photo sent to the Editor of Harper's Weekly, where an engraved version of it ran on 30 January, 1864). Along with the image were biographical sketches of all of the people in the photograph. Wilson Chinn, the person standing to the far left, bears a scar on his forehead from a brand put there by his owner. Robert Whitehead, wearing what looks like a uniform, is actually a minister, while the only other adult in the picture, Mary Johnson, was a cook in a New Orleans household. The children, as one can see, run the gamut from entirely white looking, Charles Taylor--obviously the child of his master--to dark-skinned Isaac White, in the center of the photograph.
This large group photograph as well as individual cartes-de-visites of all of the parties posed here, were sold to raise funds for the newly freed slaves.