Commanded the 1st Corps of the Army of Northern Virginia
Severely wounded in the Battle of the Wilderness, Virginia in May 1864
(1821-1904) Born in Edgefield District, South Carolina, he was one of the foremost Confederate generals of the Civil War, and the principal subordinate to General Robert E. Lee, who called him his "Old War Horse." An 1842 graduate of West Point, Longstreet fought in the Mexican War, and was wounded in the Battle of Chapultepec. Throughout the 1850s, he served on the western frontier. In June 1861, he resigned his U.S. Army commission, and joined the Confederacy. He commanded Confederate troops during an early victory at Blackburn's Ford in July, in action at the First Battle of Manassas. Longstreet made significant contributions to most major Confederate victories, primarily in the Eastern Theater with the Army of Northern Virginia. He played an important role in the Confederate success during the Seven Days Battles in the summer of 1862, where he helped supervise repeated attacks which drove the Union army away from the Confederate capital of Richmond. Longstreet led a devastating counterattack that routed the Union army at the Second Battle of Manassas in August. He also played vital roles at the battles at Sharpsburg and Fredericksburg. Longstreet's most controversial service was at the Battle of Gettysburg in July 1863, where he openly disagreed with General Lee on the tactics to be employed, and reluctantly supervised several unsuccessful attacks on the Union forces who held the high ground. Sent to the Western Theater to aide General Braxton Bragg, his troops launched a ferocious assault on the Union lines at Chickamauga that carried the day. Returning east, he ably commanded troops during the Battle of the Wilderness in May 1864, where he was seriously wounded by friendly fire. He later returned to the field, serving under General Lee in the Siege of Petersburg, and in the Appomattox campaign. Longstreet enjoyed a successful post-war career working for the U.S. government as a diplomat, civil servant, and administrator. His support for the Republican Party, and his cooperation with his old pre-war friend, President Ulysses S. Grant, as well as critical comments he wrote about General Robert E. Lee's wartime performance, made him anathema to many of his former Confederate colleagues. Consequently, his detractors focused on Longstreet's actions at Gettysburg as a principal reason for why the South lost the Civil War turning him into their personal scapegoat, actions that would prove unjustified. Longstreet's reputation has undergone a reassessment, and many Civil War historians now consider him among the war's most gifted tactical commanders. General James Longstreet died in Gainesville, Georgia, on January 2, 1904, six days before his 83rd birthday. Bishop Benjamin Joseph Keiley, who had served under Longstreet during the war, said his funeral Mass. Longstreet's remains are buried in Alta Vista Cemetery in Gainesville.
Wet plate, albumen carte de visite photograph, mounted to 2 3/8 x 4 card. Half view pose wearing his double breasted Confederate general's frock coat. Imprint on the front mount, "Gen. Longsteet." Back mark: The Monumental Photograph Company, No. 178 W. Baltimore St., Baltimore, Md. Light age toning and wear. Desirable pose with Maryland back mark.