THE CAMERA RECORD
THE CIVIL WAR was the first in history to be photographed on a large scale. Mathew Brady, Alexander Gardner, T.H.O'Sullivan, and others followed the Union troops and took pictures of everything from generals to army mules. They got some of their most striking shots by driving out after a battle with the wagons that collected the dead. They used big box cameras on tripods, and collodion-coated wet glass plates which had to be sensitized in one kind of chemical bath immediately before exposure and developed immediately after in another. The process was painfully awkward but it produced a magnificent record of the war.

Large box cameras like this reproduction were mounted on tripods.

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