Library of Congress Unveils Rare Civil War-Era Views

Fort Moultrie, No. 9 (Robin Stanford Collection, the Library of Congress)
The Library of Congress has acquired hundreds of rare stereographic views from Robin G. Stanford, a Houston woman whose collection focuses on the Civil War era and the South during and after the period it practiced slavery.

Stanford, who began collecting stereographic views as a hobby in the 1970s, acquired many images depicting planter society and the everyday lives of slaves, Confederate rebels in action, Charleston before its destruction, the early days of emancipation, and President Lincoln’s funeral obsequies.

Plantation no. 7, Rockville Plantation negro church, Charleston, S.C., Jany. 31, 1863.  The Robin G Stanford Collection at the Library of Congress.

“Plantation no. 7, Rockville Plantation negro church, Charleston, S.C., Jany. 31, 1863.” The Robin G Stanford Collection at the Library of Congress.

The LC purchased approximately 500 images from Stanford’s larger collection, choosing subjects previously unrepresented in its extensive holdings.  A fraction of the images are available for viewing while the rest are being cataloged and digitized.

Stanford’s collection is a windfall to the millions of Americans who avidly study those heart-wrenching and momentous times.  We are grateful for her labors.

Click here to see a preview of the Stanford collection at Fredericksburg.com
and here to access the collection at the Library of Congress.

4 responses

  1. Wow–what a find to have so many–what appear to be–very clear pictures depicting that era.

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    • You’re so right. The types of scenes in this collection I’ve never seen in photographs before. I’m looking forward to seeing all the images in the collection.

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    • Her example is inspiring. I’m surprised there were so many fine old stereographs out there left to buy. Let’s here it for the lady collectors–Stanford is right up there with Susan Douglas.
      Best wishes to you, JG!

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