Gettysburg field hospital, Pennsylvania, USA, July, 1863.
3 1 c m
actual image size: 32cm x 23cm

Gettysburg field hospital, Pennsylvania, USA, July, 1863.

© National Media Museum / Science & Society Picture Library


Albumen print from the album asembled by John Downes Rochfort. Rochfort visited all the major American Civil War sites in 1867 and some of the photographs he purchased en route have since become some of that war's best known images. Up to this time war had been portrayed as a series of heroic tableaux; these photographs revealed its realities for the first time. The three days of the Battle of Gettysburg produced enormous casualties, 23,000 on the Union side, and 25,000 Confederates. Here a wounded man lies on the surgeon's table while the surgeon stands nearby with a knife. Several orderlies get ready to hold the wounded man still during amputation. The surgeon's tent is decorated with greenery in celebration of the Union army's victory.

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