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At the Institute’s core is the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the great archives in American history. More than 65,000 items cover five hundred years of American history, from Columbus’s 1493 letter describing the New World to soldiers’ letters from World War II and Vietnam. Explore primary sources, visit exhibitions in person or online, or bring your class on a field trip.

Cook, George S. (1819-1902) [Confederate Flag raised over Ft. Sumter]

Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC05111.01.0013 Author/Creator: Cook, George S. (1819-1902) Place Written: Fort Sumter, South Carolina Type: Photographs Date: 15 April 1861 Pagination: 1

Summary of Content: Extremely rare salt print taken by George S. Cooke of the interior of Fort Sumter after it was taken by Confederate troops. With pencil inscription at the top of the mount: "With the new flag of the south now raised and our Southerners in the stronghold at Fort Sumpter [sic], we will see which sister states join the cause." The flag described is the first flag of the Confederacy, with 7 stars and three horizontal stripes. The image has been published: Davis, Image of War v.1 p.102. On back side of photograph there is penciled a note from M.J. Davis to General Gideon Johnson Pillow: "General Pillow, The seriousness of the situation can best be shown, needless to say: leadership is important and Southern Sons are called to free our oppressions. Such a call as made to you without demand. Pillow - Tennesee, your life, your heritage in in [sic] the [illegible] of jeopardy! Rally and lead without hesitation in [illegible] means defeat. Defeat means death. Death means failure under the hands of scoundrels but [illegible] to who we allow to guide our destiny-. M.J. Davis, Char[leston]. S.C. April "

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Historical Era: Civil War and Reconstruction, 1861-1877

Keywords/Subjects: Best_civil_war_photos, Civil War, Military History, Union Forces, Confederate General or Leader, Confederate States of America, Battle, Battle of Fort Sumter, Fort Sumter, Fortification, Propaganda

Sub Era: The American Civil War