Three Confederate prisoners at Gettysburg

Possibly the war’s most famous photo. A Brady one, taken some time after the battle, though the date seems to be in dispute. Also in dispute is the unit or units of the three Rebs. I have seen, though I forget where, them being identified as Mississippians. Indeed, 13th Regiment Mississippians. But as this discussion shows, they also have been attributed to Virginia, Florida and North Carolina. (Their shoes are odd, looking more like carpet slippers than brogans.) One forum I saw called them deserters or stragglers. Straggling was common in hard marching. The 13th had many stragglers when it was part of Jackson’s “foot cavalry” in the days before Sharpsburg in 1862.

About Dick Stanley

Retired Texas daily newspaperman
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2 Responses to Three Confederate prisoners at Gettysburg

  1. I know you have listed one forum for disscussion, but the Authentic Campaigner has also covered this photograph breaking down the uniforms and equipment anc such. This posting may be of interest to you.

  2. Dick Stanley says:

    Thanks for the comment, John, and the link.

    Interesting stuff there, particularly the closeups at the link of the man on the left and the one in the middle. One on right wasn’t in focus to begin with. Although I didn’t see much new, except the two rings on the left pinky of the middle fellow. I can think of several stories about that, but who could ever be sure?

    Occurs to me now that, instead of being stragglers captured from the retreat back to Virginia, they could have been detailed by their units as hospital stewards to watch after and care for Rebels wounded so seriously that they were left behind.

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