Image: Lt. Col. Joseph Story Pitman, First Rhode Island Infantry

11 09 2022
Carte de visite by Mathew B. Brady of Washington, D.C. Joseph Story Pitman, an 1839 Brown University graduate and lawyer, had raised a company of volunteers during the Mexican War, concluding his service in 1848 as major of the 14th U.S. Infantry. He became the lieutenant colonel of the Rhode Islanders in 1861, and led one group of 500 men to Washington (Burnside led the rest). Sent home on detached duty in June 1861, he missed Bull Run. He died in 1883 as a brigadier general in the state’s militia. (Courtesy of Military Images Magazine/Rick Carlile Collection)

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Image: Capt. Peter Simpson, Jr., Co. K, 1st Rhode Island Infantry

10 09 2022
Carte de visite by Mathew B. Brady of Washington, D.C. Col. Peter Simpson, Jr., of the Woonsocket Guards. Born in Canada, Simpson had moved to Woonsocket as a teenager and found work in the local mills. He later joined the Guards, and rose through the ranks to serve as its colonel. When the war began, the Guards were activated for duty in the 1st as Company K, with Simpson as captain. He commanded the company at Bull Run and garnered praise for his bravery. He mustered out with the rest of the regiment at the end of its 90 days service. He became a successful cotton mill owner, and died in 1889. His wife and two children survived him. (Courtesy of Military Images Magazine/Rick Carlile Collection)

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Image: Lt. George Frank Low, Co. A, 1st Rhode Island Infantry

9 09 2022
Carte de visite by Mathew B. Brady of Washington, D.C. Providence jeweler George Frank Low wears the standard officer’s double-breasted uniform of the regiment. He served as a second lieutenant in Company A and survived his three-months with the regiment. He came back a second time, from May to August 1862, as a captain in the 10th Rhode Island Infantry. He spent most of this period in relative safety inside the defenses of Washington. Low lived until 1905. (Courtesy of Military Images Magazine/Rick Carlile Collection)

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Image: Ensign James Henry Chappell, Co. F, 1st Rhode Island Infantry

8 09 2022
James Henry Chappell, Carte de visite by J. Appleby Williams of Newport, R.I. When the Newport Artillery Company formed in the early 1850s, the founding members included James Henry Chappell. An expert saddle maker, he closed up shop in April 1861 and joined his fellow militiamen to form Company F of the 1st. Chappell ranked as an ensign, or junior lieutenant. He posed for this portrait holding a Whitney revolver and a U.S. Model 1850 sword. He returned to Newport after the end of his three-month’s service and reopened his shop. Chappell went on to become a respected chiropractor and lived until 1914. (Courtesy Military Images Magazine/Martin Schoenfield Collection)

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Image: Pvt. Lewis Richmond, Co. C, 1st Rhode Island Infantry

7 09 2022
Top, left: In civilian clothes, about 1861. Carte de visite by Frank Rowell of Providence, R.I. Rick Carlile Collection. Bottom, left: As a colonel, about 1865. Library of Congress. Right: Carte de visite by Mathew B. Brady of Washington, D.C. Rick Carlile Collection (Courtesy of Military Images Magazine/Rick Carlile Collection)

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Image: Soldiers of Co. D, 1st Rhode Island Infantry

6 09 2022
Albumen print possibly by Alexander Gardner of Washington, D.C. A group from the company strike a seemingly serious pose with pipes and cards to stave off the monotony of life at Camp Sprague. (Courtesy of Military Images Magazine/Library of Congress)
Albumen print possibly by Alexander Gardner of Washington, D.C. Cigars and pipes dominate the playful scene which includes an especially animated pose of the trio of soldiers standing at the corner of the barracks. Also of note is the presence of African Americans. The two men of color, one pictured in each portrait, may have been employed as servants. The stoic woman staring straight at the camera may have cleaned the barracks. Company D, and its brother Company C, were originally raised in Providence as the “First Light Infantry.” (Courtesy of Military Images Magazine/Library of Congress)




Image: Col. Ambrose Everett Burnside, 1st Rhode Island Infantry

31 08 2022
Ninth-plate ambrotype by Manchester & Brother of Providence, R.I. (Courtesy Military Images Magazine, National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution)

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Image: Lt. Addison Hyde White, Co. A, 1st Rhode Island Infantry

31 08 2022
Carte de visite by Mathew B. Brady of Washington, D.C. Addison Hyde White, was a 30-year-old businessman born in Connecticut. He’s pictured here in officer’s full dress. Of note is his tall-crowned fur felt hat, to which is attached a dark plume. Also of interest is the device on his cap box cover, which may be the state seal or an eagle. The use of this device appears unique to the Cadets. He poses with a holstered revolver and a U.S. Model 1850 sword. White survived his enlistment, returned to Rhode Island, and became an insurance agent. He died in 1894. (Courtesy Military Images Magazine/Rick Carlile Collection)

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Image: Maj. Joseph Pope Balch, 1st Rhode Island Infantry

30 08 2022
Carte de visite attributed to Bundy & Rowell of Providence, R.I. Joseph Pope Balch, 38, had experience as a militia officer prior to the war. He led the regiment at the Battle of Bull Run in place of Col. Burnside, who commanded the brigade, and Lt. Col. Joseph S. Pitman, who had left the regiment the previous month. Balch returned to Providence after the end of his three-month term and resumed his service as an officer in the Rhode Island Militia. He received a brevet rank of brigadier general of volunteers in 1865. He died in 1872. (Courtesy of Military Images Magazine/Rick Carlile Collection)

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Image: Pvt. William Chace, Co. D, 1st Rhode Island Infantry

29 08 2022
Carte de visite by Mathew B. Brady of Washington, D.C. Providence-born William Chace, a private in Company D, wears the blue blouse, which harkens back to Revolutionary War era hunting shirts. Chace is fully dressed and equipped for campaign, complete with red blanket, haversack, drum-style canteen attached to a thin cord and a small pocket revolver. He grips the muzzle of his U.S. Model 1855 rifle musket. His black hat, turned at an angle, reveals the lining inside. Chace survived his time with the regiment and did not rejoin the army after the expiration of his term of enlistment. He lived until 1908. (Courtesy Military Images Magazine/Rick Carlile Collection)

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