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MATHEW BRADY - The indomitable war photographer in the very costume which made him a familiar figure at the first battle of Bull Run, from which he returned precipitately to New York after his initial attempt to put into practice his scheme for picturing the war. Brady was a Cork Irishman by birth and possessed of all the active temperament which such an origin implies. At Bull Run he was in the thick of things. Later in the day, Brady himself was compelled to flee, and at nightfall of that fatal Sunday, alone and unarmed, he lost his way in the woods near the stream from which the battle takes its name. Here he was found by some of the famous company of New York Fire Department Zouaves, who gave him a sword for his defense. Buckling it on beneath his linen duster, Brady made his way to Washington and thence to New York. In the picture we see him still proudly wearing the weapon which he was pre-pared to use for the protection of himself and his precious negatives.

Below is the gallery of A. D. Lytle—a Confederate photographer—as it stood on Main Street, Baton Rouge, in 1864, when in the employ of the Confederate Secret Service Lytle trained his camera upon the Federal army which occupied Baton Rouge. It was indeed dangerous work, as discovery of his purpose would have visited upon the photographer the fate of a spy. Lytle would steal secretly up the Observation Tower, which had been built on the ruins of the capitol, and often exposed to rifle shots from the Federals, would with flag or lantern signal to the Confederates at Scott's Bluff, whence the news was relayed to New Orleans, and provision made for smuggling the precious prints through the lines. Like Brady, Lytle obtained his photographic supplies from Anthony & Company of New York; but unlike Cook of Charleston, he did not have to depend upon contraband traffic to secure them, but got them passed on the "orders to trade" issued quite freely in the West by the Federal Government.

MATHEW BRADY, AFTER BULL RUN

THE GALLERY OF A CONFEDERATE SECRET-SERVICE PHOTOGRAPHER, BATON ROUGE, LOUISIANA, 1864

Mathew Brady
Lytle Photography Studio

 

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Civil War Photographers

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Mathew Brady with General Burnside

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