To commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, the Marshall (Ill.) Public Library is presenting an exhibit, “Experiences of the Illinois Civil War Soldier: Reflections through Art and Artifacts.”
This traveling exhibition explores the journey of Illinois Civil War soldiers as presented through their art.
The exhibit will be on view Monday through Sept. 30. It was created by and is on loan from the Tarble Arts Center at Eastern Illinois University.
The exhibit includes reproductions of paintings, drawings, newspaper illustrations, photographs and other art and artifacts from the Civil War period. The exhibit leads the visitor through the struggles of the war, from the call for volunteers to survivors’ remembrances.
The art featured includes sketches by Lt. Frederick Ransom of the 11th Illinois Infantry and Private Levi Ross of the 86th Illinois Infantry, and paintings by noted folk artist Olof Krans, a sergeant in the 57th Illinois Volunteers.
The reproductions in “Experiences of the Illinois Civil War Soldiers” come from art and artifacts in the collections of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum, Illinois State Military Museum, Chicago History Museum and Bishop Hill State Historic Site, several private collectors and other sources.
Most of the art dates from the war years of 1861-1865. In a section dedicated to remembrance, the art and objects depicted come from the 25 years that followed the Civil War.
According to a press release: “Soldiers used art to express and share their feelings of frustration, grief, bravery and homesickness. Created while waiting in camp, confined in enemy prisons or in the years following the war’s conclusion, each piece depicts the weight of the soldier’s experiences.”
Images of artifacts included in the exhibit include a painted cavalry flag from the 10th Illinois Cavalry, associated with the siege of Vicksburg, and a painting of the battle of Lookout Mountain by James Walker.
The exhibit was created for the Tarble Arts Center by Eastern Illinois University’s Historical Administration Graduate Program class of 2012-13. Professor Mark Hubbard of the EIU history department assisted as guest curator.
A Facebook page shows how the exhibition was developed (dft.ba/-6LZw).
For more information, contact the library at 217-826-2535.