Battle of North Anna
Original Author: Timothy H. O'Sullivan
Created: May 1864, published ca. 1866
Medium: Albumen photographic print
Publisher: Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Division

Battle of North Anna

A series of wet-plate glass images by civilian photographer Timothy H. O'Sullivan captures Union activity on May 24–25, 1864, along the North Anna River, the site of a series of small engagements known collectively as the Battle of North Anna. Soldiers lounge on the Chesterfield Bridge; a party from the 50th New York Engineers builds a road on the south bank of the river while, in the background, Union wagons and horses traverse the canvas pontoon bridge at Jericho Mills; a railroad bridge of the Richmond and Fredericksburg line stills smolders after Union troops demolished the structure on the afternoon of May 25; soldiers man Union breastworks on the north bank of the river; and, in a moment of repose, the men bathe in the river.

Veteran Union war photographer Timothy O'Sullivan worked for the Washington, D.C.–based photo firm run by Alexander Gardner. O'Sullivan was Gardner's chief photographer in the field during the last year of the war and he created some of the iconic images of the Overland Campaign.

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