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    Description

    Original Hand-Titled Mathew Brady Photograph "Admiral Lessofsky And Captains Of Russian Fleet."
    Original hand-titled Mathew Brady photograph "Admiral Lessofsky and Captains of Russian Fleet." Not many appreciate that Russia helped the Union in the American Civil War. Under an agreement between President Abraham Lincoln and Russian Tsar Alexander II, Russia sent naval ships to the U.S. to help Lincoln keep the country together. And, as part of the good-will effort, several delegations of Russian Naval officers visited San Francisco, New York and Washington, D.C. The most impressive of these tours included a huge parade down Broadway with the November 1863 arrival of a Russian cruiser squadron commanded by Real Admiral Lessofsky consisting of the frigates Alexander Nevsky (flagship), Peresvet, the corvets Variag and Vitiaz and the clipper Almaz cast anchor in New York Bay. This photo, taken at Mathew Brady's Gallery on Broadway, took place just before that pageantry and parade that culminated with a huge reception: "On November 5th, the much-anticipated ball for the Russians began at 9:00 in the evening, when the first carriages pulled up to the Academy of Music. Two thousand tickets were sold for the Soirée Russe, as this dance was called; the crowd of onlookers standing outside was estimated to be even larger, making the whole affair something of a mob scene. The Russians were astonished to learn that the theater had been converted to a ballroom in less than twenty four hours, the work beginning only after the opera closed at midnight the night before. 'None but Americans could accomplish such a feat!,' they exclaimed when they saw the glittering scene." This photograph was reproduced as an engraving for Harper's, November 7, 1863 titled "Our Russian Visitors" and detailed: "On page 708 we reproduce an admirable photograph by Brady, representing our Russian visitors, Admiral Lessofski and the Captains of His Fleet. They are all sturdy-looking men, perfect gentlemen, and as accomplished in letters and science as they are skillful in their profession. Private individuals, cities, and public bodies are vying with each other to do them honor. For the noble attitude of Russia in abstaining from interference in our war has touched the hear of every American and filled it with gratitude. Brady's photograph is, as usual, a success." A rare, albumen photograph on original hand-titled board, 10" x 8" overall, some usual flyspecks but great tone and contrast.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    November, 2019
    2nd Saturday
    Internet/Mail Bids: 5
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 87

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