Assignment 5

  1. For this assignment I used a photo depicting fallen Confederate soldiers near a cannon. After reviewing the photo and reading many pages about Civil War weapons I learned that the cannon model was most likely a Napoleon because that was the model used mostly by both sides.  The source I used to compare the picture to the models is a secondary source that is credible:

After reviewing this photograph I also learned that it was from the Antietam Battle, which was the bloodiest battle during the whole civil war.  The photo taken by Brady’s company and Alexander Gardner. This photo taken during the bloodiest battles in history was a historic photograph because Gardner wanted to show the American people something they had never seen before: photos depicting all the dead soldiers. The photo I used for my project shows the dead Confederate soldiers laying on a field beside their weaponry and I believe the photographers purpose was to show how cruel and brutal war can truly be.  Because he decided to photograph hidden parts of war that nobody ever got to see the reality set in for Northern citizens when his photos were published: “The New York Times said in 1862, “Mr. Brady has 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. . . .By the aid of the magnifying glass, the very features of the slain may be distinguished.””  The source I chose for information on the photographer is a secondary source that is credible:

The third part of the photo that I had never knew before research was researching the battle of Antietam.I previously knew this was the bloodiest battle, but didn’t really know much else.  This was the first battle that was being pushed into the northern states led by “General Robert E. Lee’s Army against Union General George McClellan’s”.  This is a historic battle because it was Lee’s first attempt to invade the North.The Northern Army learned about Lee’s plans by a troop finding the troop movements “wrapped around three cigars,”  but Lee found out the order was missing and reunited all his troops.  The Union also vastly outnumbered Lee and the total death toll was nearly 4,000.  Even though historians believe the battle was a draw Lincoln viewed this battle as a victory and this win allowed him to finally issue the Emancipation Proclamation.  The source is secondary:


  1. Sources found:
      1. This source is going to be very useful as a secondary source because it explains the deadliest weapons of the civil war and it will allow me to start researching the advantages each side had.
    2. Frontier Skills: The Tactics and Weapons that Won the American West (BOOK) William C. Davis
      1. This book is a really good source of information and includes some primary source information by showing photos used in the war.This book will be useful because it talks about how each gun was different and why the North had an advantage due to more efficient and faster guns.
      1. This is another secondary source with actual photos and will be useful to my project because it talks in detail about each weapon used during the civil war.
      1. This primary source just like my inspiration is also a photo. This photo is great because it allows me to see the weapons wielded for the battle of Antidam as well as use the photo in my project when talking about a weapon.
      1. This is another primary source photo and it will be extremely helpful when talking about the cannons in my project because it shows what was really used and allows people to visualize it.
      1. This is another photo that shows a portrait of a confederate soldier with all his gear. This photo will be really useful when looking and comparing the gear to a Union soldier.
      1. This just like the above photo is a primary source showing a Union soldier and this will allow me to compare the gear giving people a visual difference for my project.
      1. This source is all about the battle of Antietam and it will allow my to look into how the weapons influenced the bloodiest battle as well as be able see first hand how battles with weapons plays out.
  2. Thesis: The North had a clear and distinct advantage during the Civil War attributable to their factories and skilled workers inventing better technology, better rifles, better sidearms, and the Gatling Gun.





2 Replies to “Assignment 5”

  1. Hi Thomas,

    I like this topic! It is a really interesting way of studying Antietam without just stating the facts. One thing that might be interesting to think about if you have space in your essay is the response to that photograph. That information will definitely be harder to track down than it would be to find similar information today since people obviously couldn’t leave a comment on the article or tweet at the newspaper, but perhaps a different newspaper wrote a response to that article and photo.

  2. I like this topic and am researching something similar. There are a lot of unspoken elements in a photo that bring up questions that generally have intriguing answers. Your thesis seems to focus more on the North during this time, but I am wondering if there is good contrasting information available for the South during this time as well. I also like your thesis because I can see how the initial photo struck an idea and you followed it through to your thesis.

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