Thursday, December 1, 2011

May Your Days Be Merry & Bright

This probably isn't the cheeriest picture to begin December with, but for many soldiers, this was Christmas. The image is by Edwin Forbes, a sketch artist for Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper.

Forbes was attached to the Army of the Potomac in 1861, at the age of 22, and was one of the few artists who covered the entire war.

At least the guy in the picture is alive, and looks fairly well. Elmer Ellsworth was dead by this time, as were many others, of course. I think I have said before that I am so glad there is now DNA typing. I ache to think of the folks back home who never, ever knew what happened to their soldier. How truly heartbreaking that must have been for so many.

Christmas is coming, however--time to think happier thoughts! My next post for emergingcivil should be up soon. It is about Thomas Nast's first two Santa Claus images for Harper's Weekly. Many think his "Santa Claus In Camp" was the first depiction of Santa for Harper's, but he did one about a week earlier. It was titled "Christmas Eve, 1862." Santa is in that one as well, although not the main character. Be sure to check it out! Ho! Ho! Huzzah!


  1. Great posting on the Christmas of 1862 Meg . Keep up the great work .

    Steve Mata


  2. Thanks--I always hope to please someone! I got some beautiful pix of Tejon in the snow, so will do those as well.