Friday, August 17, 2007

Figure It Out Friday

Where was this photo taken?
There is someone here who would not normally be photographed.


GreenmanTim said...

The columns are a giveaway. This is the Lee-Arlington Mansion. Your second clue will take me some time to unravel. There is a brigadier general on the steps (in the light colored sash with the double row of paired uniform buttons). That would be Brigadier General Montgomery Meigs, Union Quartermaster General and the one who recommended establishing the cemetary at Arlington. Most if not all of the other officers are well below general rank and probably his staff. His son, Captain John R Meigs, was killed in October 1864 and interred in Arlington. I do not know if Captain meigs is one of the young men in the photograph or if the photograph was taken after his death.

The top hatted civilian is intriguing, and from this distance looks a bit like the baloonist Thaddeus Lowe. I confess I cannot tell if any of the women in the photographs were those known to be employed in the secret service.

Now I am running out of guesses.

Denise Patrick said...

I have added you to my blog and will be back later to try to figure out the picture! I love history, but I have concentrated on European because I lived there for so long. Thanks for giving me a reason to delve into some American history, too.

The Tour Marm said...

Thanks for the kind words Denise! I'll also link to yours (although my link list was lost during an attempt to put it into a widget box). I also enjoy European history especially if it relates to the US.

Tim, my friend, you're correct about Arlington House and you did pick out the 'hatted civilian'. Think about the clue: would not normally be photographed.

The year was attributed to 1861 and I imagine immediately after the poor Lee women were forced to flee their home. With Meigs there, there is an air of self satisfaction and perhaps even a celebratory nature to this gathering. I believe young Meigs would have still been up at West Point. (Have you read my piece on Bringing Cemeteries to Life? Both of the Meigs are discussed in it and you can see John Meigs' effigy at Arlington.)

GreenmanTim said...

Ah, then it isn't Lowe: it is photographer Mathew Brady, who had that facial hair!

The Tour Marm said...

Hey Tim!

You've won my first Photo Sleuth Award!

But I should tell you that the general is not Meigs, but Samuel P. Heintzelman.

GreenmanTim said...

I can live with Heintzelman. Grey beard, thin, right rank.

And thanks for the award. It is lovely.

Lordandlady said...

Great site ,I am a little late--have fuel d this site and took liberty to add you as friend as time permits would like to read more-bob