This exhibition used large-format reproductions of original photographs, prints, drawings and maps to document how the Civil War affected patterns of life in the District of Columbia. Special focus centered on activities in and around the historic Patent Office Building—now home to the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery and the Smithsonian American Art Museum. The exhibition included views of forts and hospitals, the Navy Yard and the Sixth Street Wharf, and landmarks such as the Capitol, White House, Ford’s Theatre and the Old Capitol Prison. A special feature was the images of notable Washington personalities—statesmen, spies, soldiers and nurses—who gave the city a sense of national purpose, glamour and intrigue during four years of war. This exhibition curator was historian James Barber.
This exhibition was made possible through the generosity of Albert H. Small.