April 1865 Gaines Mills/Cold Harbor picture

noman

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John Reekie Pictures April 1865
#914
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2011649975/ Gaines Mill
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2012647827/ Gaines Mill

#916
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/cwp2003000088/PP/ gaines Mill
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2011649976/ gaines Mill aka #916

#918
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2002713100/ gaines Mill and Cold Harbor
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/cwp2003000494/PP/ Cold Harbor
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/cwp2003005611/PP/ Cold Harbor
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2013645963/ Cold Harbor
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2011649977/ near Cold Harbor aka #918

Made a query to NPS as to where these pictures were taken-Gaines Mills or Cold Harbor?
received following email today:
Your two e-mails regarding photographs reached me. All of those Reekie photographs from the spring of 1865 were taken in the vicinity of the Gaines's Mill and Cold Harbor battlefields. Those two battlefields overlap in places, so it is entirely plausible that the dead in the views could be from either action...

Robt. E. L. Krick
Richmond NBP
 
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noman

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Have also come across a website that reports at least one of th Reekie pictures sites still exists
http://hanoverbrass.com/ Note must scroll down to see Reekie Picture
Sent a inquiry to webmaster received the following answear: 9/4/2013

Mr. Fazzin, Looking toward the CS lines and on the left. Adams farm where the 7th New York heavy artillery used as infantry made the charge that June 3rd morning. You can see the Confederate artillery trench in the backgroung and the trench in the original photo was covered in by the Adams but would be in the same place. It ran along to top of the hill.Not many trenches were dug in the seven days battle and it was more a running battle. This photo was I think a year later or 1866 when they came back to try to ID the dead. "Carnival of Blood" by Robert Keating give a good idea of what happened here. You may use this but it is only what I think. The pictures line up and Everything seems to be a match. I do not think these photo's are Gaines Mill. regards GW

Sent it on to NPS Historian with query-what adams house is ment?
Received following answear from Robert Krick:
At Cold Harbor the original Adams House was well behind the Confederate lines. At Gaines's Mill it was just behind the Union lines, and heavily contested. Your correspondent made reference to the Adams farm, which today extends well to the east of where the original Adams House stood in 1862 and 1864.
 

noman

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Recently wrote to NPS about the possibilty that these two photographs were taken together-there appears to be a dismembered leg in both of them:
these April 1865 photographs-sometimes listed as taken at either Gaines Mill or Cold Harbor
Could they have been taken very close together?
In the first picture of "Unburied Dead" is a picture of a dismembered leg
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/resource/stereo.1s02700/
In the second picture "Collecting remains" there is also a dismebered leg on the strecther. Possibly the same limb?
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/resource/stereo.1s02702/

Received an answer fron NPS Historian Robert Krick
Yes, very likely taken close together, facing in different directions. They were dealing with dozens or even hundreds of bodies, so there likely were more than a few loose legs in the vicinity.

Also asked if-Just how many remains were recovered from the Gaines Mills/Cold Harbor battlefields in April 1865?

received an answer from NOS Historian Robert Krick
I don't know. They weren't actually recovered, in the usual sense. The workers seen in the 1865 photographs that you like were called out because so many of the Union battlefield graves were in poor condition. A great many of the bodies had been covered up, rather than buried, and of course that washed away in due time. The very sandy soil of the region made it even worse. So the workers were collecting what they could find above ground and then reburied them in huge mass graves, precise location unknown. The next year, 1866, those mass graves were dug up and the bodies removed, mostly to the Richmond National Cemetery rather than the Cold Harbor National Cemetery. In 1866 they dug up about 2500 Union graves, all told, at Gaines's Mill and Cold Harbor. Therefore the skeletons you see on the stretcher were soldiers who were buried three times: once, very badly, immediately after being killed; again in April 1865; and then sometime in 1866 in one of the national cemeteries.
 
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rhettbutler1865

Colonel, CSA Cavalry
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John Reekie Pictures April 1865
#914
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2011649975/ Gaines Mill
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2012647827/ Gaines Mill

#916
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/cwp2003000088/PP/ gaines Mill
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2011649976/ gaines Mill aka #916

#918
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2002713100/ gaines Mill and Cold Harbor
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/cwp2003000494/PP/ Cold Harbor
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/cwp2003005611/PP/ Cold Harbor
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2013645963/ Cold Harbor
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2011649977/ near Cold Harbor aka #918

Made a query to NPS as to where these pictures were taken-Gaines Mills or Cold Harbor?
received following email today:
Your two e-mails regarding photographs reached me. All of those Reekie photographs from the spring of 1865 were taken in the vicinity of the Gaines's Mill and Cold Harbor battlefields. Those two battlefields overlap in places, so it is entirely plausible that the dead in the views could be from either action...

Robt. E. L. Krick
Richmond NBP
I have a Chilmark sculpture of Gaines Mill-one of my favorites!
 


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