Photography During The Civil War

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“The Civil War was not the first war to be photographed, but it was the first in which the camera played an important role.” ("The Military Experience.") For the first time, photography was a large part of a war. It was able to photograph all aspects of the Civil War, and it showed everyone that. War was also a large part of photography. After the war, photography became frequently used, and it ended up being quite important to the whole world. Due to photography, we will never forget the Civil War, and due to the Civil war we will never forget photography. Photography gave people a chance to make money and make businesses. Mathew Brady was one of the biggest names in photography during the Civil War. “[He] sought to create a comprehensive…show more content…
Being a field-photographer during the civil war was not easy. “The intrepid photographers were subject to much of the same mortal danger, inclement weather, and dreadful living conditions as the combatants” (Covkin, Serena. "Photography and History: The American Civil War." ). Additionally, photographers had to bring a hefty amount of camera equipment with them. “They also had to be prepared to process cumbersome light-sensitive images in cramped wagons.” ("Photography and the Civil War) They were near battles, and had to risk potentially getting harmed for the sake of taking photographs. Luckily, this persistence to take photos would sometimes yield good results. Antietam, an early Civil War battle in 1962, was a milestone in Civil War photography. It was “the first battlefield photographed before the dead were buried” ("Photography at Antietam."). Those not fighting were shocked by the gruesome nature of some post-battle photos, as many had never seen such brutality. In a review of a photo taken by Alexander Gardner (although the credit was given to Mathew Brady), The New York Times said that he “[had] done something to bring home to us the terrible reality and earnestness of war. If he has not brought bodies and laid them in our dooryards and along the streets, he has done something very like it” (“Mathew Brady”). Photographs of early battles showed the public the grim realness of war; however,…show more content…
They could purchase photographs of their family and friends that were going off to war, so that they could remember them while they were gone. They could look at photographs of political figures and important battlefields so they could stay informed. Then, after the war, things continued being photographed. It showed that photography was going to be a large part of life for years to come. Photography revolutionized wars of the future as well. In later wars, photography played a large role for similar reasons to the Civil War. Photography can capture emotions, feelings, and other details that writing or drawing can't capture. Languages can change and drawings can be hard to decipher, but photographs can be understood by anyone for centuries. Photography of the Civil War and other wars offers a way to remember those wars

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