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Civil War Token

Physical Description:
copper (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 21 mm; 13/16 in
Object Name:
token
Description:
This Civil War Token depicts a portrait of General G. B. McClellan on the obverse and the Knickerbocker Currency logo on the reverse. Knickerbocker Currency was stuck by William H. Bridgens, the same man who was the die-cutter for Lindenmueller Currency.
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Civil War
Coins, Currency and Medals
ID Number:
NU*72.118.75
Accession number:
302411
Catalog number:
72.118.75
See more items in:
Armed Forces History: National Numismatic Collection
Civil War
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Additional Online Media:

Civil War Token, 1864

Physical Description:
copper (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 21 mm; 13/16 in
Object Name:
token
Date made:
1864
Description:
Although most Civil War Tokens were made out of copper, like this specimen, they were struck in other materials as well. Tokens made out of brass, silver, lead, and rubber are known to numismatists.
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Civil War
Coins, Currency and Medals
ID Number:
NU*71.167.45
Catalog number:
71.167.45
Accession number:
296443
See more items in:
Armed Forces History: National Numismatic Collection
Civil War
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Additional Online Media:

Civil War Token, 1861

Physical Description:
copper (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 31 mm; 1 7/32 in
Object Name:
token
Date made:
1861
Description:
There are numerous examples of Civil War Tokens that display sentiments in favor of the Union. Many of the patriotic series Civil War Tokens were issued in New York. The lack of tokens in the South has been attributed to the fact that the majority of private minters were located in the North. This token depicts a pro-Union stance: “I AM READY” and “THE UNION MUST & SHALL BE PRESERVED.” Once these tokens were circulated, they would remind their user of the Union’s justifications for war and buoy up nationalist spirits.
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Civil War
Coins, Currency and Medals
ID Number:
2013.0023.006
Accession number:
2013.0023
Catalog number:
2013.0023.006
See more items in:
Armed Forces History: National Numismatic Collection
Civil War
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Additional Online Media:

Civil War Token, 1863

Physical Description:
copper (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 18 mm; 23/32 in
Object Name:
token
Date made:
1863
Description:
This particular Civil War Token depicts a patriotic theme. The obverse, front of the coin, depicts a profile image of George Washington while the reverse, back, shows two hands shaking between laurel sprigs and the words “PEACE FOREVER.” One hand is labeled as the North and the other hand is labeled as the South.
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Civil War
Coins, Currency and Medals
ID Number:
1977.0779.108
Catalog number:
1977.0779.108
Accession number:
1977.0779
See more items in:
Armed Forces History: National Numismatic Collection
Civil War
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Additional Online Media:

Civil War Token, 1863

Physical Description:
copper (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 19.8 mm; 25/32 in; wt. 3.685 g
Object Name:
token
Date made:
1863
Description:
In the beginning of 1862, citizens went on a hoarding frenzy as high inflation plagued the market after the outbreak of the Civil War. Their target: coins of gold, silver, and copper. The hoarding problem was so extreme that the government halted the minting of coined money and by the end of 1862 there were hardly any metallic coins in circulation. This was acutely felt by business men and customers alike since coinage in small denominations was most commonly tendered at that point in time. In order to alleviate the situation, merchants and tradesmen sought alternatives to government issued small change. Privately issued tokens, typically one cent and made of copper and similar in size to government issued coinage, were used instead and by late 1862 these Civil War Tokens were circulating in Cincinnati and New York. This particular token’s text, “FOR PUBLIC ACCOMODATION,” reflects the pecuniary problem that was happening at that time.
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Civil War
Coins, Currency and Medals
ID Number:
NU*72.118.76
Accession number:
302411
Catalog number:
72.118.76
See more items in:
Armed Forces History: National Numismatic Collection
Civil War
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Additional Online Media:

United States Civil War Portrait Album

Physical Description:
paper (overall material)
leather (overall material)
purple (overall color)
Measurements:
open: 11 7/8 in x 17 5/8 in x 1 13/32 in; 30.1625 cm x 44.7675 cm x 3.556 cm
closed: 11 7/8 in x 8 3/4 in x 1 1/2 in; 30.1625 cm x 22.225 cm x 3.81 cm
Object Name:
album
Place assembled:
Switzerland
Date made:
1861-1864
Description:
The struggle between North and South was followed with great interest at home and abroad. Portraits of the leading players helped those far from the action imagine the individuals they read about in newspapers. This album was kept by Karl Schenk, who became president of Switzerland in 1865. It contains small portraits known as cartes-de-visite because they were about the size of calling cards people presented at the door when visiting fashionable residences. Introduced in the late 1850s, when a process was devised for making multiple prints from a single glass negative, they functioned mainly as collectables to be preserved in albums.
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Civil War
Photography
Civil War
ID Number:
PG*71.62
Catalog number:
71.62
Accession number:
302789
See more items in:
Culture and the Arts: Photographic History
Civil War
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Additional Online Media:

Civil War Soldier

Maker:
unknown
Physical Description:
ambrotype (overall production method/technique)
wood (overall material)
glass (overall material)
metal (overall material)
velvet (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 3 in x 2 1/2 in; 7.62 cm x 6.35 cm
Object Name:
photograph
Date made:
ca 1861-1865
Description:
Photographs can be powerful connections to the past. Soldiers, for example often had their portraits made before going off to war so that loved ones would have a rememberance of them in the event they did not return. This decorative mat is unusual and suggests the pride the owner may have felt about his status as a fighting soldier.
Ambrotypes were most popular in the mid-1850s, and, therefore, are less common than other formats for portraits of Civil War soldiers. Ambrotypes are cased collodian negatives backed by dark cloth, paper, or varnish. In this example, pink coloring has been applied to the subjects's cheeks to make the portrait feel more warm and human.
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Photography
Civil War
Military
Portraits
Credit Line:
Gift of Warren Fox Kaynor, Waterbury Companies
ID Number:
PG*75.17.927
Accession number:
322775
See more items in:
Culture and the Arts: Photographic History
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Civil War Soldier's Mess

Physical Description:
flour (overall material)
water (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 4 in x 4 in x 3/16 in; 10.16 cm x 10.16 cm x .4318 cm
Object Name:
hardtack
Object Type:
hardtack
Associated date:
1861 - 1865
Description:
Physical Description
Small metal box to protect matches, two-piece lantern, metal frying pan, and cup. Hardtack.
General History
A match safe, lantern, frying pan, and cup would have been part of a soldier’s equipment. Hardtack is the name given to a thick cracker made of flour, water, and sometimes salt. While it has been called by several nicknames, the Union Army of the Potomac referred to the ration as hardtack, and the name stuck. When stored properly, hardtack would last for years. Because it could be prepared cheaply and would last so long, hardtack was the most convenient food for soldiers. The army furnished hardtack by weight, but in most units the biscuits were doled out by number, with a ration generally being nine or ten.
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Military
Food
ThinkFinity
Event:
Civil War
Civil War and Reconstruction
ID Number:
AF*55596
Catalog number:
55596
Accession number:
195333
See more items in:
Armed Forces History: Armed Forces History, Military
ThinkFinity
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Civil War Draft Wheel

Physical Description:
wood (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 6 ft; 1.8288 m
Object Name:
lottery wheel
Associated date:
1861-1865
Description:
Wooden draft wheel used during the Civil War. The names of men eligible for the draft were written on slips of paper and dropped into this wheel. An official pulled out names to fill the ranks of the Union army.
Transfer from the War Department, 1919
Subject:
Government, Politics, and Reform
Civil War
Selections from the Abraham Lincoln Collection
Event:
Civil War
Related Publication:
Rubenstein, Harry R.. Abraham Lincoln: An Extraordinary Life
ID Number:
PL*025222
Catalog number:
25222
Accession number:
64127
See more items in:
Political History: Political History, General History Collection
Selections from the Abraham Lincoln Collection
Exhibition:
3 East Landmark
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

1864 Civil War Album Quilt Top

Maker:
unknown
Physical Description:
fabric, cotton (overall material)
thread, cotton (overall material)
pieced, inscribed (overall production method/technique)
Measurements:
overall: 90 in x 60 in; 229 cm x 152 cm
Object Name:
quilt
quilt top
Place made:
United States: Massachusetts, Amherst
Date made:
1864
Description:
Three hundred eighty-four 3 ¾-inch squares of printed and plain white cottons were used to create this quilt top. The plain white squares were all inscribed in ink by many different hands. Several squares are dated “1864” and some state a place, “Amherst.” Most squares contain religious messages, but some secular inscriptions are evident: “Three cheers for the Red, white & blue 1864” and “God save Gen. Grant and his brave men.”
The pieced top was used to cover an older wool quilt (TE*T14021.00A) and the finished product was sent to a Union army hospital during the Civil War.
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Quilts
Civil War
Quilting
Textiles
Domestic Furnishings
ID Number:
TE*T14021.00B
Accession number:
272176
Catalog number:
T14021B
See more items in:
Home and Community Life: Textiles
Quilts
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Additional Online Media:

1863 Susannah Pullen's Civil War Quilt

Quilter:
Pullen, Mrs. Gilbert
Quilters:
unknown
Physical Description:
fabric, cotton (overall material)
thread, cotton (overall material)
filling, cotton (overall material)
pieced; lined, quilted (overall production method/technique)
Measurements:
overall: 84 in x 50 in; 213 cm x 126 cm
Object Name:
quilt
Object Type:
quilts
Place Made:
United States: Maine, Augusta
Date made:
1863
Description:
Mrs. Gilbert (Susannah G.) Pullen and her Sunday school class made this pieced quilt in Augusta, Maine in 1863. She followed the guidelines set by the U.S. Sanitary Commission for bedding to be used in the Civil War. The fourteen young ladies in the Sunday school class contributed over 150 inscriptions that were penned on the quilt's fifteen separate star-patterned blocks. They chose Bible passages, stories to uplift and guide, and riddles to which the answer was only to be found in the Bible. They also provided numerous inscriptions on practical health advice, patriotic messages, and light-hearted riddles. Even personal messages such as: "If you are good looking send me your photograph. Direct to the name in the large square. E.G.D." appeared on the quilt. It was hoped that the quilt would not only provide a diversion for the wounded soldiers during their long days recovering in hospital but also "alleviate or prevent disease and lead to happiness and Heaven." The numerous inscriptions on this quilt provide an insight into the feelings and concerns of the period and perhaps all war eras.
Susannah Pullen expressed hope for correspondence when she penned these words on the quilt: "We have many dear friends connected with the army & any proper letters from any persons embraced in the defense of our country, received by any whose names are on this quilt shall have a reply. Tell us if nothing more its destination. We meet with many others to sew for you every Wednesday and your letters would prompt us to more exertions for our patriots." Two letters remain with the quilt and attest to its use at the Carver and Armory Square Hospitals in Washington D.C. A letter from Sergt. Nelson S. Fales of Nov. 22, 1863 eloquently expresses his gratitude: "Dear Madam I have had the pleasure of seeing the beautiful 'Quilt' sent by you to cheer and comfort the Maine Soldiers. I have read the mottoes, sentiments, etc., inscribed thereon with much pleasure and profit."
On the back of the quilt Susannah Pullen penned these words: “The commencement of this war took place Apr. 12th 1861. The first gun was fired from Fort Sumter. God speed the time when we can tell when, and where, the last gun was fired; & ‘we shall learn war no more.’ If this quilt survives the war we would like to have it returned to Mrs. Gilbert Pullen, Augusta, Me . . . This quilt completed Sept. 1st 1863.” It did survive use during the Civil War, and it was returned to Mrs. Pullen as she requested.
Susannah G. Corey was born in Brookline, Massachusetts in 1816. She married Gilbert Pullen (1810-1890) April 26, 1840. Gilbert was listed as a marble cutter on the 1850 census. They lived in Augusta, Maine with their two daughters, Susan E. and Charlotte. Susannah and Gilbert were members of the First Baptist Church. Susannah died November 26, 1871, and is buried in the Forest Grove Cemetery in Augusta, Maine.
Susannah Pullen's Civil War Quilt was exhibited at a library in Augusta, Maine, for many years. Over time the inscriptions faded, but fortunately a transcription of them was made in the early-twentieth century. In 1936 Susannah’s granddaughter, Gertrude B. Davis, donated the quilt in her mother’s name, Charlotte Pullen Scruton. It is a reminder of the efforts of the many women who used their needlework and organizational skills to provide comfort for the armies of both the North and South.
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Quilting
Textiles
Civil War
Patriotic
Maine
Government, Politics, and Reform
Military
Quilts
Credit Line:
Gift of Mrs. Charlotte Pullen Scruton
ID Number:
TE*T07726
Accession number:
138338
Catalog number:
T07726
See more items in:
Home and Community Life: Textiles
Quilts
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Additional Online Media:

Personal and public: Civil War portraits

Creator:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Type:
Youtube videos
Uploaded:
2011-09-25T17:06:16.000Z
Video Title:
Personal and public: Civil War portraits
Description:
While the photographs of battlefields are absolutely compelling, Shannon Perich, curator of Photographic History, is really interested in the ways in which personal relationships with photography during a national crisis help us understand the nuances of past individual experiences. By drilling down to the personal, the complexities of the political, social and cultural life are revealed and create a richer history. This video was created by Matt Lemanski, in partnership with the American University School of Communication. Learn more on our blog: http://blog.americanhistory.si.edu/osaycanyousee/2011/10/civil-war-portraits-where-personal-and-public-meet-video.html
Views:
2,581
Video Duration:
5 min 2 sec
Topic:
American History
Youtube Category:
Education
See more by:
SmithsonianAmHistory
YouTube Channel:
SmithsonianAmHistory
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Gardner's Photographic Sketchbook of the Civil War. Volume 2

Maker:
Gardner, Alexander
Physical Description:
paper (overall material)
Object Name:
photographs, album
Date made:
1866
Description:
Gardner's Photographic Sketchbook of the War was published in 1866. Each of the two albums contains fifty photographs of different scenes of the Civil War and is accompanied by text written by Gardner. These are rare books, each produced by hand. Just a few sets were sold as they were very costly to produce and, after the Civil War, many Americans were looking forward, trying to move on from the death and destruction of the war.
Gardner was born in Paisley, Scotland in 1821. Before coming to America in 1856, he was trained as a jeweler and a chemist, but was more interested in the fairly new invention of photography. After immigrating to New York, he worked for Mathew Brady in his photographic studios in New York and Washington, DC. In 1862, after disagreeing with Brady over photographers' rights to receive credit for their pictures, he left his studio and started his own business in Washington, DC, where his most famous subject was Abraham Lincoln. Gardner took not only the last posed photograph of Lincoln in February 1865, but also photographs of his funeral and the hanging of the conspirators in his assassination. He also took pictures of other government figures such as Supreme Court Justices and visiting delegates.
During the Civil War, Gardner became a photographer for the Army of the Potomac, taking pictures of not only non-battle scenes, such as military camps, but also the aftermath of battles that had just taken place. He later combined his photographs of the war with those of his staff photographers and published the two-volume book Gardner's Photographic Sketch Book of the War, for which he became most famous. Gardner died in 1882 in Washington, DC.
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Art
Photography
National Treasures exhibit
Gardner's Sketchbook
Event:
Civil War
Related Publication:
Kendrick, Kathleen M. and Peter C. Liebhold. Smithsonian Treasures of American History
Publication title:
Treasures of American History online exhibition
Publication author:
National Museum of American History
Publication URL:
http://americanhistory.si.edu/treasures
ID Number:
1986.0711.0283
Accession number:
1986.0711
Catalog number:
1986.0711.0283
See more items in:
Culture and the Arts: Photographic History
National Treasures exhibit
Gardner's Sketchbook
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Additional Online Media:

George Washington Civil War Token

Maker:
Scovill Manufacturing Company
Measurements:
overall: 1.9 cm; 3/4 in
Object Name:
token
Description (Brief):
The Scovill Manufacturing Company of Waterbury, Connecticut produced this token in 1863. The Scovill Company was established in 1802 as a button manufacturer and is still in business today. Scovill was an early industrial American innovator, adapting armory manufacturing processes to mass-produce a variety of consumer goods including buttons, daguerreotype mats, medals, coins, and tokens.
Obverse: Image of a George Washington equestrian statue. The legend reads: FIRST IN WAR, FIRST IN PEACE/1863.
Reverse: U.S. shield surrounded by four flags, wreath with one side of palm and one of oak. The legend reads: UNION FOR EVER.
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Industry & Manufacturing
Scovill Manufacturing Collection
ID Number:
1981.0296.1599
Accession number:
1981.0296
Catalog number:
1981.0296.1599
See more items in:
Work and Industry: Production and Manufacturing
Scovill Manufacturing Collection
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Additional Online Media:

U.S. Civil War Colored Troops Medal

Commissioner:
Butler, Benjamin Franklin
Maker:
Tiffany & Co.
Physical Description:
cotton (overall material)
siver (overall material)
Measurements:
overall: 53 cm x 3.8 cm; 20 7/8 in x 1 1/2 in
Object Name:
medal
Description:
During the American Civil War, Gen. Benjamin F. Butler so appreciated the heroic actions of African American soldiers under his command at the 1864 battles of Fort Harrison and Fort Gilmer that he commissioned a special medal for them. Designed by Anthony C. Paquet and realized in silver by Tiffany, the U.S. Colored Troops medal had no official status. After General Butler was relieved of his command in 1865, the 300 U.S. Colored Troops who had received the medals were forbidden to wear them on their uniforms.
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Coins, Currency and Medals
Military
Cultures & Communities
Event:
Civil War
Battle of Fort Harrison
Battle of Fort Gilmer
ID Number:
1985.0612.01
Catalog number:
1985.0612.01
Accession number:
1985.0612
See more items in:
Armed Forces History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Additional Online Media:

Designating Flag, 3rd Division, 5th Army Corps

Physical Description:
wool (overall material)
Object Name:
flag, designating
Description:
Rectangular wool bunting flag. White field with a large blue Maltese cross in the center of the flag. Reinforcement squares of fabric at both hoist corners. Undyed heading with a metal grommet at each end. Inscription on hoist reads "5TH ARMY/CORPS 3RD DIVISION".
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Military
Flags
Designating Flags
Civil War
Flags
Civil War
Event:
Civil War
ID Number:
AF*25266L
Catalog number:
25266L
Accession number:
64127
See more items in:
Civil War
Flags
Designating Flags
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Designating Flag, 2nd Brigade, 1st Division, 8th Army Corps

Physical Description:
wool (overall material)
cotton (heading material)
Measurements:
overall: 71 3/4 in x 54 in; 182.245 cm x 137.16 cm
Object Name:
flag, designating
Description:
Wool bunting pennant flag. White field with a blue border on the hoist edge. There is a red six-point star inset in the center of the flag. White cotton hoist is machine-stitched and does not have grommets. Flag seams are flat-felled and machine-stitched. Inscription on hoist reads "2nd Brg. 1st Div. 8 Army Corps".
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Military
Flags
Civil War
Flags
Civil War
Designating Flags
Event:
Civil War
ID Number:
AF*25238F
Catalog number:
25232F
Accession number:
64127
See more items in:
Civil War
Flags
Designating Flags
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Designating Flag, 3rd Brigade, 1st Division, 19th Army Corps

Physical Description:
wool (overall material)
canvas (part: heading material)
cotton (part: applique material)
Measurements:
overall: 50 1/4 in x 45 in; 127.635 cm x 114.3 cm
Object Name:
flag, designating
Description:
Pre-1863 design. Rectangular wool bunting flag. Horizontal triband design. The top and bottom bands are blue; the middle band is white. In the center of the middle band is a black cotton number "3" applique. White cotton canvas heading with no grommets. Machine stitching; flat-felled seams.
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Military
Flags
Civil War
Flags
Civil War
Designating Flags
Event:
Civil War
ID Number:
AF*25249D
Catalog number:
25249D
Accession number:
64127
See more items in:
Civil War
Flags
Designating Flags
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Designating Flag, 2nd Brigade, 3rd Division, 19th Army Corps

Maker:
Robert C. Toy
Physical Description:
wool (overall material)
Object Name:
flag, designating
Place made:
United States: Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
Date made:
1890-1897
Description:
Wool bunting pennant flag. White field with a red border at the hoist. In the center of the flag is a blue fan-leaved cross with an octagonal center (similar to a Maltese cross). White hoist with no grommets. The inscription on the hoist reads "3rd Div. 2nd Brg. 19 th Army Corps R. C. Toy 49 N. 9th Phila."
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Military
Flags
Civil War
Flags
Civil War
Designating Flags
Event:
Civil War
ID Number:
AF*25249HH
Catalog number:
25249HH
Accession number:
64127
See more items in:
Civil War
Flags
Designating Flags
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

Designating Flag, 1st Brigade, 1st Division, 22nd Army Corps

Maker:
Robert C. Toy
Physical Description:
wool (overall material)
Object Name:
flag, designating
Place made:
United States: Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
Date made:
ca 1890-1897
Description:
Wool bunting pennant flag. White field with a red pentagonal cross in the center of the flag. White hoist with no grommets. Inscription on hoist reads "R.C. Toy 49.N.9th Phila 22 Army Corps 1st Brg 1st Div".
Location:
Currently not on view
Subject:
Military
Flags
Designating Flags
Civil War
Flags
Civil War
Event:
Civil War
ID Number:
AF*25252E
Catalog number:
25252E
Accession number:
64127
See more items in:
Civil War
Flags
Designating Flags
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

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