The Confederate Sketches of Adalbert Volck is the second in our series of exhibitions marking the 150th anniversary of the Civil War. Having emigrated to the United States in 1848 after Germany’s failed revolution, Volck settled in Baltimore. Unusual for the politically liberal émigrés, Volck sided with the Confederacy during the Civil War.
A dentist by trade, Volck served the Southern cause in a myriad of ways, including smuggling medical supplies to Virginia across the Potomac River. However, Volck’s most significant contribution to the Confederate cause was his production of pictorial propaganda that vilified Lincoln, abolitionists and Union soldiers in his publication Sketches from the Civil War in North America.
The exhibition will include many of his original etchings and lithographs as well as a copper plate used to print one of the drawings in the publication. James Barber, NPG Historian, served as curator.