....a large portrait of Gen. Kershaw, standing on a battle-field, in full Confederate uniform....The concentrated thought written in the commander's face, the vivid expression of eye, cheek and lip, the well-poised figure of the soldier, are all so faithfully portrayed, that it scarcely needs the Southern-cross, warriors in the distance, or the "war clouds rolling down"...
While researching a regiment in Kershaw's division, I ran across an 1874 account of the Richard R Kirkland story - you know, "The Angel of Marye's Heights." Evidently, the account is not well-known so I posted it in it's entirety in @War Horse 's thread https://civilwartalk.com/threads/the-angel-of-marye’s-heights.167413/
Besides the significance of the account, I became fascinated by William Preston Hix, the man who wrote it. Hix was an artist - specifically a "portrait painter." I wont repeat all the background I posted in that other thread, but suffice to say, William Preston Hix is reported to have painted a portrait of Maj Gen Matthew C Butler (1871); a full-length post-war portrait of PGT Beauregard; and a large oil-on-canvas entitled "The Women of the South Decorating the Graves of the Confederate Dead" (1866.) But the one that caught my eye was a full-length portrait of Maj Gen Joseph Brevard Kershaw.
Here's the description of William Preston Hix's 1873 painting of General Kershaw, viewed during a tour of the art gallery of Messrs. Wearn & Hix, Main Street, Columbia, SC, and reported in The Daily Phoenix. (Columbia, SC), November 30, 1873, page 2.
...But the picture considered by Mr. Hix himself as his chef d'oeuvre, is a large portrait of Gen. Kershaw, standing on a battle-field, in full Confederate uniform. Here we linger. The concentrated thought written in the commander's face, the vivid expression of eye, cheek and lip, the well-poised figure of the soldier, are all so faithfully portrayed, that it scarcely needs the Southern-cross, warriors in the distance, or the "war clouds rolling down," to carry us back to the days when Kershaw's Division was always among the foremost in the ranks of our immortal heroes; and the memories which come welling up are too sweet and too painful to be dwelt upon in the Columbia of to-day.
So where are all these paintings today? I have been unable to locate any of them!
The portrait of J B Kershaw at the South Carolina State House is a full-length portrait. The subject is older; has grey hair; and is dressed in a full Confederate uniform, but it has none of the background described in Hix's portrait and is reported to be by the artist P. P. Carter.
The Kershaw portrait in the collection of the American Civil War Museum (formerly known as the Museum of the Confederacy) is an oil-on-canvas, waist-up version, reported to be by David Silvette, circa 1930-1950, so that's not the Hix painting either.
Does anyone know where any of the Hix paintings are located? Wouldn't it be grand to find this portrait of Kershaw in a dusty attic somewhere? @Package4
The Daily Phoenix. (Columbia, SC), November 30, 1873, page 2.
Images of Joseph Brevard Kershaw used atop this post are from public domain.