Civil War Photography Analysis
Walt Whitman was in his forties when the war began and did not participate as a soldier. Two of Whitman's brothers did, however, join the Union Army. Andrew Jackson Whitman served only briefly but George Washington Whitman fought with the Fifty-first Regiment of New York Volunteers for most of the war. When George was wounded in the Battle of Fredericksburg in December 1862, Whitman made the trip to the nation's capital and then to Falmouth, Virginia, across the Rappahanock River from Fredericksburg to find and care for his brother. George was only slightly wounded, but Walt's errand of mercy would forever change his outlook on the war and life.
- From Whitman's Drum Taps and Washington's Civil War Hospitals
1. Read several poems from Walt Whitman's Drum-Taps.
2. Browse several Civil War Photographs from the U.S. Library of Congress, then choose a photograph that illustrates the theme of one of Whitman's Drum-Taps poems.
3. After choosing a photograph, complete the Photograph Analysis Guide.
4. Copy the photograph and attach the lines from Whitman's Drum-Taps.
5. Write a paragraph describing how the poem and the photograph describe a similar affect.
See also: Ken Burns: Civil War Portraits