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Gardner's Photographic Sketch Book of the War to Hit the Block in Cowan's November 20th American History Auction

Gardner's Photographic Sketch Book of the War to Hit the block in Cowan's November 20th American History Auction 

 CINCINNATI, OH –November 10, 2015— Cowan's Auctions American History Live Salesroom Auction will take place on November 20th, 2015 at 10:00 AM EST. The sale will include over 300 lots and will be held at Cowan's Auctions salesroom in Cincinnati, OH. Featuring a broad selection of photographs, books, documents, political memorabilia, maps, flags and more, the auction promises to include items for all types of collectors.

 The featured item in the auction, and one that rarely surfaces on the auction block, is a copy of Alexander Gardner's Photographic Sketchbook of the War by Philip & Solomons (1856-1866). Called the "first modern photo-essay" )Stapp 1991: 28), Gardner's "sketch book" is recognized as the first published collection of Civil War photographs. Conceived by Gardner as a post-war memento, the 100 photographs represent selections from over 3,000 negatives taken during the Civil War by himself and his associates. The book with hit the auction block on November 20th with an estimate of $100,000-150,000.

 Fresh-to-the-market photography will be a focal point of the auction. Highlighted in the sale is a Robert E. Lee Salt Print Autographed in Richmond, Virginia, May 23, 1865.  Estimated at $15,000-20,000, this portrait has had a major influence on artists who have tried to portray Lee over the years. A Wild West Show Group of Photographs by Prince Roland Bonaparte, including a previously Unknown Portrait of Annie Oakley, is expected to bring $6,000/8,000, two images of Abraham Lincoln's Funeral Procession in Chicago will hit the block as separate lots both with estimates of $3,000/5,000, an Alexander Gardner Photograph of the Hanging of the Lincoln Conspirators is expected to fetch $3,500/4,500, and a Timothy O' Sullivan Wheeler Expedition Photograph of Black Canon is estimated at $5,000/7,000.

 Documents and manuscripts will be a focal point of the auction. A Extensive Civil War Archive of Union General Nathaniel McLean, including Correspondence, Photographs and more will be sold with an estimate of $30,000/40,000. The result of this archive is a treasure trove of wartime detail, penned from the perspective of a field-grade and later, general officer's point of view. A Thomas J. Stonewall Jackson VMI Diploma Signed by Several Future Confederate Officers is estimated at $8,000/10,000,  a selection of Civil War Diaries of William Tufts from the 4th Maine Infantry and Union Army Balloon Corps is expected to bring between $8,000/10,000, and an Exceptionally Rare Group of Bleeding Kansas Broadsides

 Additional notable lots include John Wilkes Booth Dueling Target Pistol estimated at $15,000/30,000, an Abraham Lincoln Rare Bronze Life Mask by Clark Mills is estimated at $5,000/7,000, and a California Gold Rush Journal of Abel E. Babcock is estimated at $3,000/6,000.

 If you need any additional information about the auction, upcoming events or consigning an item, you can contact our American History Specialist, Katie Horstman at




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