North Carolina Civil War Image Portfolio

North Carolina seceded from the Union on May 20, 1861, the last southern state to do so. Relatively early in the war, Union forces occupied areas along the North Carolina coast and sought to limit the flow of supplies to Confederate forces by means of a naval blockade of the state’s ports. The most significant land battle fought in North Carolina was at Bentonville in Johnston County, on March 19-21, 1865, when Confederates, under the command of Gen. Joseph E. Johnston, made a vain attempt to thwart the advance of Union troops commanded by Gen. William T. Sherman. On April 18, nine days after Gen. Robert E. Lee surrendered the main Confederate army at Appommatox, Virginia, Johnston surrendered his forces to Sherman near Durham, N.C.
Images in the North Carolina Collection depicting the war are from woodcuts, engravings, lithographs, and photographs. The overwhelming majority of these were made by persons accompanying Union forces or were made from sketches and other information they provided. Numerous woodcuts appeared in publications based in the north such as Harper’s Weekly and Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper. Lithographers, including Nathaniel Currier and James Merritt Ives in New York City, produced hand-colored prints depicting Civil War events including some in North Carolina. The North Carolina Collection Photographic Archives has twenty-seven carte-de-visite prints attributed to Union photographer O. J. Smith made in New Bern about 1863, following the town’s occupation. Most of the images owned by the Collection, regardless of format, are from a northern perspective and provide limited insight into life within the Confederacy. Even so, the images are significant historical documents.

Civil War Images–African Americans
Civil War Images–Battlefields
Civil War Images–Blockades
Civil War Images–Campaigns and Battles
Civil War Images–Calvary Operations
Civil War Images–Cityscapes
Civil War Images–Civilian Relief
Civil War Images–Commemoration
Civil War Images–Confederate Monuments
Civil War Images–Confederate Soldiers
Civil War Images–Confederate Veterans
Civil War Images–Destruction and Pillage
Civil War Images–Detention Facilities
Civil War Images–Economic and Industrial Aspects
Civil War Images–Equipment and Supplies
Civil War Images–Government Officials
Civil War Images–Historic Buildings
Civil War Images–Medical Aspects
Civil War Images–Military Facilities
Civil War Images–Naval Operations
Civil War Images–Prisoners
Civil War Images–Reconstruction
Civil War Images–Regiments
Civil War Images–Social Aspects
Civil War Images–Surrenders
Civil War Images–Union Soldiers
Civil War Images–Women