Local News

June 9, 2013

Civil War anniversary: William Waud, well known sketch artist at Dalton

Brothers Alfred and William Waud were both talented sketch artists who became among the most important illustrators of the American Civil War.  Engravings of their sketches appeared in the New York Illustrated News, Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper, and Harper’s Weekly.  The accuracy and immediacy of their illustrations provided some of the most dramatic and graphic coverage of the conflict.

The accompanying images of scenes around Dalton and Northwest Georgia are from the collection of the Library of Congress.

Alfred Rudolph Waud, the more famous of the two brothers, was born Oct. 2, 1828, in London, England, and died April 6, 1891, in Marietta while touring old battlefields in the South.

 He studied art in London at the Government School of Design (now the Royal College of Art) and the Royal Academy of Arts before immigrating to the United States in 1850.  Alfred covered the Eastern Theater of the war.

William Waud was born on April 13, 1831, in St. Marylebone, Greater London, England, and died Nov. 10, 1878, in New Jersey.  Like his equally skilled older brother, William reported on the Civil War as an embedded sketch artist, though sometimes for  a competing publication.  

William worked for Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper as a “special artist,” and, while he initially covered events such as the inauguration of Confederate President Jefferson Davis and the bombardment of Fort Sumter, his assignments later took him directly into the heart of the battles.

In 1864 William joined his brother on the staff of Harper’s Weekly and covered Sherman’s March through the South. He was also noted for his coverage of Lincoln’s funeral cortege, following the funeral train on its long journey from Washington, D.C., to Springfield, Ill. His drawings of the commemorative ceremonies in cities along the route were used to create wood engravings for Harpers Weekly.

This article is part of a series of stories about Dalton and life in Dalton during the Civil War. The stories run on Sunday and are provided by the Dalton 150th Civil War Commission. To find out more about the commission go to www.dalton150th.com. If you have material that you would like to contribute for a future article contact Robert Jenkins at (706) 259-4626 or robert.jenkins@robertdjenkins.com.

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