Incidents of the War: Battery D, 5th U.S. Artillery in Action 1863 Timothy O’Sullivan 1840-1882
The gunners from Battery D have just taken their position and are ready to engage with the enemy. Looking down the long line of artillery soldiers preparing for the battle ahead. The opponent is out of view
Caption for this photograph states that “This picture was made as the guns were engaging the enemy, the gunners…calling to the photographer to hurry his wagon out of the way, unless he was anxious to figure in the list of casualties.”-The Civil War in Art
Why no actual battle pics from the war?
Photographers rarely tried to capture action scenes like this one on the battlefield. Not only was it dangerous but the bulky cameras, long exposures, and collodion-on-glass, or wet-plate, technology they were using made it difficult. Because of these limitations, photographers often documented strategic sites, camp scenes, preparation for battle, and the aftermath of battle rather than the fighting itself.