Rare Carte de Visite Signed by General Ulysses S. Grant

  • Original Carte-de-Visite Photograph of General Ulysses S. Grant Signed.

Original Carte-de-Visite Photograph of General Ulysses S. Grant Signed.


Item Number: 5510

Original carte de visite signed “U.S. Grant Lt. Gen. U.S.A.” Mounted on stiff ivory card stock, the carte-de-visite measures 2.6 inches by 4 inches. Signed below the image on the print. Matted and framed. Rare and desirable.

Grant's inscription, "Lt. Gen. U.S.A.," establishes the date of this carte-de-visite as after March 9, 1864 (Simpson, 457). It was then that Lincoln gathered his cabinet "to witness something that had occurred only once before in the history of the republic. As soon as everyone had arrived, Lincoln presented Ulysses S. Grant with his commission as a lieutenant general. Only Washington had risen to that rank in the U.S. Army before him" (Civil War Times Magazine). As Grant was rarely in the capital, returning only briefly to outline his plans to Lincoln, this photographic portrait may well have been taken very soon afterward. The mount verso features the Washington D.C. studio imprint of renowned Civil War photographer Alexander Gardner, which he opened in 1863. By that time Gardner was "arguably the most talented and ambitious photographer working in America. If Brady had perhaps conceived the grand idea of an epic documentation of the Civil War, it was Gardner who actually executed it" (Photography and the American Civil War, 81).

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