@ 2011 New-York Historical Society logo

Guide to the Colonel George W. Bradley Collection of Civil War Photographs
1864-1865, undated
  PR 218

New-York Historical Society
170 Central Park West
New York, NY 10024
Phone: (212) 873-3400


@ 2011 New-York Historical Society

Collection processed by Sandra Markham

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit on November 01, 2011
Description is in English.

Descriptive Summary

 
Creator: Bradley, George W., 1836-1882, collector.
Title: Colonel George W. Bradley Collection of Civil War Photographs
Dates: 1864-1865, undated
Abstract: The Colonel George W. Bradley Collection of Civil War Photographs holds forty-nine albumen photographs that document military installations in Virginia. Photographs primarily depict the Army of the Potomac supply depot at City Point and the nearby Army of the James hospital at Point of Rocks, though the collection contains other military scenes in Virginia.
Quantity: 1.5 Linear feet (1 box)
Location note: Department of Prints, Photographs, and Architectural Collections
Call Phrase: PR 218

Return to Top »


Historical Note

The Army of the Potomac's supply depot at City Point, Virginia, was located at the confluence of the Appomattox and James River, twenty miles southwest of the Confederate capitol at Richmond. The enormous complex of nearly three hundred buildings, eight wharves, and miles of attendant rail lines rose up in less than a month after General Ulysses S. Grant issued his June 18, 1864, order to create a local base of support for Union troops involved in the siege of the strategically important city of Petersburg. Consisting of repair shops, warehouses, rations commissaries, barracks, and hospitals, the City Point installation was critical to Grant's success in capturing Petersburg on April 2, 1865, and, days later, forcing the surrender of General Robert E. Lee and the Army of Northern Virginia.

The depot provided daily rations for a half-million soldiers and tens of thousands of their horses, ammunition for their rifles (stored on a special and isolated ordnance wharf), and repair of everything that they used, from wagons and ambulances to saddles and horseshoes. The Union Army's military railroad division built a network of rail lines that eventually surrounded Petersburg, eight miles to the southwest. The system, compete with turntables for quick redirection of locomotives, connected the City Point wharves directly with the front lines, ensuring efficient delivery of the fresh food and supplies that arrived daily from northern ports on nearly four hundred transport steamers and supply boats. On their return from the battlefront, the train cars carried sick and wounded soldiers out to the hospitals at City Point.

For a remote field operation, the facilities were fairly sophisticated, most notably the seven large hospitals built around City Point. One hospital alone had more than one thousand tents and nearly a hundred log buildings to provide for the care of up to 10,000 patients at once, in addition to its own warehouses, laundries, and dining facilities. Pipes carried water from the James River, supplying the hospital with running water to maintain sanitary standards, and for use by City Point's noted lemonade stand.

Colonel George W. Bradley (1836-1882), a New York native and a career military man, was commander of the City Point depot from November 7, 1864, until the closing and decommissioning of the compound in the summer of 1865. His job as commander was to oversee all river traffic and base operations, which included financial and administrative management of what was essentially a small independent city. Bradley's assignment in Virginia was followed with other Quartermaster Corps positions including one in Baltimore. At the time of his death, he was in charge of the Quartermaster's Department in Philadelphia. His widow, Agnes M. Bradley, returned to New York and was living there in 1889 when she donated her husband's collection of photographs to the New-York Historical Society. Her gift consisted of sixty photographs, which were generally described on the paper wrapper in Folder 14. Eight of the photographs were listed as "miscellaneous not marked," and their location is unknown. Forty-nine images are now held in the collection.

Return to Top »


Scope and Content Note

The Colonel George W. Bradley Collection of Civil War Photographs holds forty-nine albumen photographs that document military installations in Virginia. The photographs are primarily of the Army of the Potomac supply depot at City Point and the nearby Army of the James hospital at Point of Rocks, though the collection contains other military scenes in Virginia. The photographs are arranged in four series: Series I. City Point; Series II. Point of Rocks; Series III. Aikins Landing; and Series IV. Miscellaneous Views. Series I through III are in the same format, prints of approximately 8.5 by 11 inches fixed to heavy paper mounts of approximately 13 by 15 inches.

Arrangement

Photographs are arranged in four series:

  1. Series I: City Point on the James and Appomattox Rivers, Virginia
  2. Series II: Point of Rocks on the Appomattox River, Virginia
  3. Series III: Aikins Landing on the James River, Virginia
  4. Series IV: Miscellaneous Views by Bostwick Brothers

Return to Top »


Access Points

Subject Names

  • Bostwick Brothers.

Document Type

  • Albumen prints.

Subject Organizations

  • United States. Army of the Potomac -- Supplies and stores.
  • United States. Army. Maine Infantry Regiment, 6th (1861-1864).

Subject Places

  • City Point (Hopewell, Va.)
  • Petersburg (Va.) -- History -- Siege, 1864-1865.
  • United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1965 -- Pictorial works.
  • United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1965.
  • Virginia -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865.

Return to Top »


Administrative Information

Provenance

Gift of Agnes Bradley (Mrs. George W. Bradley), October 1889.

Access Restrictions

Open to qualified researchers.

Photocopying undertaken by staff only. Limited to thirty exposures of stable, unbound material per day. See guidelines in Print Room for details.

Use Restrictions

Permission to reproduce any Print Room holdings through publication must be obtained from:
Rights and Reproductions
The New-York Historical Society
Two West 77th Street
New York, NY 10024
Phone: (212) 873-3400 ext. 282
Fax: (212) 579-8794

The copyright law of the United States governs the making of photocopies and protects unpublished materials as well as published materials. Unpublished materials created before January 1, 1978 cannot be quoted in publication without permission of the copyright holder.

Preferred Citation

This collection should be cited as Colonel George W. Bradley Collection of Civil War Photographs, PR 218, Department of .

Related Material at the Department of Prints, Photographs, and Architectural Collections

Many additional and contemporary photographs of the Civil War can be found in the Print Room's Civil War Photograph File (PR 164).

Return to Top »


Container List

Series I: City Point on the James and Appomattox Rivers, Virginia

Scope and Contents note

Series I holds twenty-seven photographs of administrative buildings, barracks, warehouses, and other structures created to provide logistical support for the Union Army during the Siege of Petersburg. The photographer is unknown, but as the images are uniform, lightly peopled, and distinctly documentary, they were probably commissioned by the Quartermaster Corps to record their installation. Each photograph was captioned after being mounted. They date between November 1864 and January 1865, during which time Colonel Bradley was commander of the depot.

The scenes of the City Point compound include a photograph of Appomattox Manor, the home of local doctor Richard Epps, which became the headquarters of Union General Rufus Ingalls. General Ingalls (1818-1893) was Chief Quartermaster for all Union armies operating around Richmond from 1864 through the war's end; he had selected City Point as a depot venue and oversaw the construction of the installation. There is one photograph of the office of Assistant Quarter Master E. J. Strang, the commander of the City Point repair operations. Other images in this series document the wharves, lumberyard, stables, and repair workshops, as well as the office of Colonel Bradley. There are several views of the General Hospital, and two views of the Government Bakery, which produced over 100,000 loaves of bread a day. Photographs of depot housing include the living quarters for carpenters and other workers, as well as the barracks that were home to the three thousand wharf hands employed to unload the boats. Riverside photographs show some of the transport steamers and ships that supplied the depot. In addition, there is one non-City Point image of the Hide and Fat Building at Cedar Level, which was located halfway to Petersburg on the City Point Railroad.

Photographs are arranged alphabetically by the area of the complex. The titles are contemporary and are affixed to the verso of the mounts.

Administrative buildings

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 1 [Appomattox Manor] Headquarters of Gen. [Rufus] Ingalls, Quarter Master
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 1 Office, Capt. E.J. Strang, AQM
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 1 Office, Col. [George] Bradley [and Provost Marshal's office]
1865 Jan.

Animal care

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 2 Forage Depot (Small Issue)
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 2 Mule stables
1865 Jan.

Bakery

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 3 Government Bakery [general view]
1864 Dec.
Box: 1 Folder : 3 Government Bakery South Side
1864 Dec.

Hospital, Army of Potomac

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 4 General View
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 4 Commissary Building
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 4 Headquarters
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 5 Hospital Wharf and Steamers [supply boat Argo, transport steamer  Connecticut]
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 5 Section View [row of tents]
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 5 Wharf [and supply boat Planter]
1865 Jan.

Housing

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 6 Barracks at Camp Distribution
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 6 Barracks for Wharf Hands
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 6 Carpenters Quarters
1864 Dec.
Box: 1 Folder : 6 Men's Quarters at Gen. [Rufus] Ingall's Dept.
1865 Jan.

Miscellaneous buildings

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 7 Commissary Building (Small Issue)
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 7 Government Lumber Yard and Wharf
1864 Dec.
Box: 1 Folder : 7 Hide and Fat Building [Cedar Level, Virginia]
1864 Nov.
Box: 1 Folder : 7 Quarter Master's Store Houses
1865 Jan.

Ships

 

General note

See also: Folder 5

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 8 Transport Neptune
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 8 Transport Steamer [ Washington Irving]
1864 Dec.

Workshops

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 9 Repairing Shop
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 9 Workshops South Side
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 9 Workshops West Side
1865 Jan.

Return to Top »


Series II: Point of Rocks on the Appomattox River, Virginia

Scope and Contents note

Series II has eight images of the large military hospital campus created on the opposite side of the Appomattox and upriver from City Point.

Photographs are arranged alphabetically by the area of the complex. The titles are contemporary and are affixed to the verso of the mounts.

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 10 Hospital Building, Army of the James -- General Hospital [general view of building]
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 10 Hospital Building, Army of the James -- General Hospital, East Side
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 10 Hospital Building, Army of the James -- Section of General Hospital [row of small log buildings]
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 10 Hospital Building, Army of the James -- Section of General Hospital Building [side of long log building]
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 10 Hospital Building, Army of the James -- Officer's Hospital
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 11 Hospital Boat Thomas Powell, Broadway Landing
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 11 Pontoon Bridge, Appomattox River above Broadway Landing
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 11 View from Cobb's Hill on Appomattox, Broadway Landing on the right, Hospital on the left
1864 Dec.

Return to Top »


Series III: Aikins Landing on the James River, Virginia

Scope and Contents note

Series III continues the documentation of the Petersburg-Richmond area in four views of Dutch Gap, Aikins Landing, and Jones' Landing, all of which were northwest of City Point, up the James River towards Richmond.

Photographs are arranged alphabetically. The titles are contemporary and are affixed to the verso of the mounts.

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 12 Commissary Building
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 12 Dutch Gap
1864 Dec.
Box: 1 Folder : 12 Flag of Truce Boat New York
1865 Jan.
Box: 1 Folder : 12 New Pile Bridge above Jones' Landing
1865 Jan.

Return to Top »


Series IV: Miscellaneous Views by Bostwick Brothers

Scope and Contents note

Series IV contains six images by the firm of Bostwick Brothers who, according to their own inscriptions, were "Post Photographers." Subjects include the Sixth Maine Regiment, and two groups of New York soldiers near Brandy Station in Culpepper County, between City Point and Washington, D.C. There is one riverside view at White House on the Pamunkey River, which was the site of another Union Army supply depot, and two images of the log headquarters of General Gershom Mott, a commander of the New Jersey National Guard.

Photographs are arranged alphabetically by titles inscribed on the front.

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 1 Folder : 13 Headquarters of General [Gershom] Mott (2 images)
undated
Box: 1 Folder : 13 Officers of the 86th New York near Brandy Station, Virginia
undated
Box: 1 Folder : 13 Officers of the 124th New York [near Brandy Station, Virginia]
undated
Box: 1 Folder : 13 Sixth Maine Regiment
undated
Box: 1 Folder : 13 White House [Pamunkey River], Virginia
undated
Box: 1 Folder : 14 Original wrapper for Bradley photograph collection
undated

Return to Top »


Return to Top »