In Part II of Chicago Has Art Links to America’s Civil War, more art that is part of collections in Chicago’s museums are visible. I detail five of them: a wood engraving, a watercolor, an oil-on-canvas painting, an ambrotype and an oil painting/lithograph. These are part of The Civil War in Art website.
In this faded wood engraving by an unknown artist, viewers can see steam/smoke rising from several, river steamboats. (These boats traveled up and down the Mississippi River. If they attempted to do so today, they would encounter numerous hazards since the Mississippi River is at its lowest level in many years.) By enlarging, viewers can discern some details in the human figures on the dock. The anonymous artist actually produced this engraving from a photograph that appeared in Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper on April 14, 1860. (E.H. Nelson was the photographer.) Details are lacking for the photograph’s size. This engraving has the Realism Style. This is part of a Chicago History Museum collection.
In this watercolor on paper piece that has attribution to William Thomas Law, I do not see anything remotely resembling a wigwam, but maybe there is at least one wigwam in the large, wood frame building. This piece has dimensions of 9½ in. x 13½ in. This watercolor has the Realism Style. This piece is part of a Chicago History Museum collection.
The Railsplitter (1860)
In this oil-on-canvas painting from an unknown artist, a young Abraham Lincoln is preparing to split wood using a wedge and an odd-looking ax. This piece, which is in the Naturalism/Realism Style, has dimensions of 108 in. x 84 in. This is part of a Chicago History Museum collection.
Portrait of John F.P. Robie (1861)
This is more art by an unknown artist. The drummer boy is actually a drummer boy, and he is staring at the photographer. Viewers will be able to see ornate, curly designs in the brass mat. Measuring 3¼ in. x 2¾ in, this ambrotype is Realism Style. This is part of a Chicago History Museum collection.
Our Banner in the Sky (1861)
This piece is an oil painting that the artist, Frederick Edwin Church (1826-1900), produced by layering it over a lithograph. This is not an actual, natural scene in which clouds and stars resembled the American flag, but symbolism by Mr. Church. It measures 7½ in. x 11⅜ in. This piece is part of the Terra Foundation for American Art in the Daniel J. Terra Collection.
This art further links America’s Civil War with Chicago’s museum. This art excellently depicts realistic and natural scenes, and persons who actually existed. (Do not look for Paul Bunyan and his Blue Ox.)