Battle of Harper's Ferry


This Site:

The Civil War

Civil War Art

Starting a Collection
Top Picks
Online Gallery
Search Page
Winslow Homer
Thomas Nast
Ken Burns Civil War


Civil War Overview

Western Art

Confederate History

Harper's Weekly

Republic of Texas

Revolutionary War

Mexican War


Original 1861 Civil War Illustration of

The Battle of Harper's Ferry

Up | Battle of the Alamo | The Battle of Cold Harbor | South Carolina Regiment | Battle of Rich Mountain | First Blood: Battle of Baltimore | Battle Map of Virginia | Battle of Harper's Ferry | Battle of Carthage | Battle of Bull Run

Battle of Harper's Ferry

The Battle of Harper's Ferry

You are viewing an original 1861 illustration of the Battle for Harper's Ferry.  It is from an 1861 edition of Harper's Weekly, the most popular illustrated newspaper of the day.  Note that this is not a reprint, and I absolutely guarantee its authenticity.  This leaf is over 140 years old, and the date is clearly marked on the front of print. On the day this leaf was printed, Abraham Lincoln was president of the United States,  and the Civil War was in its opening chapter! 

This is a rare and historic illustration of one of the opening salvos of the Civil War.  The upper illustration is captioned, "The Burning of the United States Arsenal at Harper's Ferry, 10 pm, April 18, 1861". The image shows soldiers and civilians in the street in front of the arsenal as it burns to the ground.  It is a dramatic illustration.  The lower image is captioned, "The March of the Virginians on Harper's Ferry".  It shows the Rebels marching up a hill, and Harper's Ferry Burning in the distance.  Making this an even more collectible piece is the story between the two illustrations.  The story includes  fascinating details of the event, including "To many of us who looked on, the scenes of that night were inexpressibly sad and solemn.  The clouds of fire rolled up magnificently from the depths of the romantic gorge, illuminating the confluent rivers and encircling cliffs for miles around.  In the martial column revealed by the blaze there stood arrayed, with deadly ball and bayonet, the first born pride of a hundred hitherto peaceful and happy families. Brethren, what has forced this fatal necessity upon us? As the smoke and vapor of a furnace goeth before the fire, so reviling before the blood".

WOW- what a prophetic message from an eye witness of this early Civil War conflict. At this point few in the country realized how long and bloody the War would be, but this particular observer had a unique sense of the suffering to come.

This is a dramatic and highly collectible piece.  Harper's Ferry was such an important part of Civil War history, and original period material is becoming increasingly difficult to find.  This piece would make an excellent addition to your collection, or a wonderful gift for any Civil War Buff.

Unlike newsprint of this century, these older, original pages do not yellow and fall apart.  The reason is that modern newspapers use an acid based process. Remnant acid in the paper causes the paper to quickly yellow and deteriorate. A different process was used in the mid-1800's which yielded an exceptional quality paper that will last for centuries. Special acid free mats should be used when you frame this piece to ensure that it will last another 150 years.  Acid free mats are available at most better frame shops.  If you have any questions related to handling or framing this piece feel free to email me. The print is approximately 11x16  inches.  I have been collecting Civil War Newspapers for over 10 years.  It is a fascinating hobby, and I find that these pieces really get noticed when framed and displayed.

The leaf is in  excellent condition. It has the rich sepia toning that you expect in original material from this period. The print will display very nicely.





 Email us at:

Copyright 2003-2018 Son of the South.

privacy policy



Are you Scared and Confused? Click Here to read My Snake Story, a story of hope and encouragement, to help you face your fears.