47 Rare Photos of the American Civil War

This September 1862 photo provided by the Library of Congress shows Allan Pinkerton on horseback during the Battle of Antietam, near Sharpsburg, Maryland. Before the outbreak of war, he had founded the Pinkerton National Detective Agency. In 1861, he famously foiled an alleged plot to assassinate president-elect Lincoln, and later served as the head of the Union Intelligence Service — the forerunner of the U.S. Secret Service.

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30 thoughts on “47 Rare Photos of the American Civil War”

    1. One would hope these photos would give us reason to think, but sadly, much of the root cause of this war; the racism, the North vs. South, the haves and have nots, still exist beneath a poorly veiled cover of unity.

  1. I’m almost ashamed of today’s casual, cavalier attitude many Americans display toward the horrifying events of the Civil War; our schools today virtually dismiss this period of our nation’s history by referencing nowhere near enough pages of student textbooks to this material….


  3. The stupidest war that we Americans ever fought. Diplomancy and reason would have saved so many lives!
    Should have eliminated slavery and better regulated interstate commerce between the north and the south.

  4. I still hate General Sherman. And don’t flame.me. I am the proud descendent of Confederate officers and of slaves.

  5. It seems as if we are doing this again today, except with words instead of guns. People need to learn how to get along or the future of this wonderful country will be horrendous.

  6. It’s awful to think of the deaths of so many Americans killing one another. Now, however, when you look at our present political situation, there seems to be even more hatred by some Americans for other Americans. A lot of our country was destroyed by that war, but now some are intent on destroying more of it.

  7. This war created modern america its values and economy from manufacturing to the birth of modern medicine! We Americans should NEVER FORGET the full measure of the lives given to form this country Over 600000 AMERICANS DIED in this co flick and as many more were injured for life! This conflict was the greatest of its time in magnitude and many many brave men and women have their lives in horrid conditions to produce the birth of modern American! These braves souls should be honored and never forgotten god bless America ??????

  8. This certainly shows the horrors of war. Its so sad to think that brothers fought against brothers, medical help was almost nil, no pain killers, and such horrible destruction/

  9. Wether it’s local, national or international, it all goes to show man’s inhumanity to man. Oh! If that much energy were placed in the respect for life and the effort to save us from ravashing deseases.

  10. Just makes you wonder how many were lost in this war and families never knew what happened to them or even where they died and were buried. So sad.

  11. Joseph Tallmadge

    This was a terrible time in our history, Hundreds of thousands of men were killed fighting for what?? Inhumane treatment of Blacks when we are all AMERICANS. President Lincoln was by far the GREATEST PRESIDENT we eve had and his dead was a result of a wicked man and a terrible time in our history. These photos were ABSOLUTELY AMAZING and should NEVER BE LOST.

  12. I am a Civil War historian based in North Carolina. Loved seeing these images, thanks for posting them. I write and publish regularly. If there are opportunities to write for this site I would be very interested and have numerous clips of published materials to submit for your review. Best regards, Nils Skudra

  13. Thank the democrat party! They started the civil war, and I am sure they will start the next one too.

  14. well the demorats of the south wanted their slave to do the work on their plantations because then they would have to do someting. that’s mostly the way they think now.

  15. 1865 African Americans were killed for trying to flee from oppression of slavery. 2020 unfair and unequal treatment such as driving while Black, jogging, walking, eating, and in church while Black is at risk of being killed .now what is next? AWFULNESS.

  16. 1865 1940’s1960’s1970’s 2020 the struggle continues for the African American. Our skin color is hated by many. That is Awful!!!

  17. I had a great grandfather who fought for the south and his brother fought for the north. So it even split our family.


  18. I agree with you Dwight Smith. I am totally disdained by what I am seeing now with our country by ‘some” of the older and younger generations. I think the younger generation is getting the senselessness of hating other people because of their color, race or ethicticity. Just going about it the wrong way be destroying what some have created by businesses and such. That I don’t agree with. We used to pride ourselves on the different people being allowed to enter the US from other countries to be freed of being persecuted and to find freedom to be whatever religion they wanted to believe. What has happened to the people since.
    I have been to ceremonies of persons that come to this country and for years study to become citizens and believe me they go thru a grueling about 5 yrs to become citizens and they are so proud the day they are sworn in to defend the country that they fought to come to for a better life. I believe that if they go thru all of that to become citizens then WELCOME. They have to start somewhere if they come in and go to become citizens with out being hunted and made scared to death of being sent back to possibly being killed That is what our country was founded on. They should be allowed to, find jobs, become citizens and live the American Dream as we all have.
    Trump just has to be replaced and soon.

  19. An awful and horrific war. All wars fit that description. Love in the world would cure all conflicts, until then we will continue to battle other countries as well as ourselves.