[E]dwin Forbes is best known today for his work during the Civil War as a special correspondent for Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper, to which he supplied a multitude of illustrations based upon his first-hand observances while embedded with the Union army. Between 1862 and 1864, Forbes’ skilled hand captured some of the war’s major battles, including Second Manassas, Antietam, Chancellorsville, the Wilderness, and Petersburg. At Gettysburg, Forbes yet again was an eyewitness to history, sketching the epic engagement as it unfolded.
After the war, Forbes continued to produce works based on his wartime experiences, including a series of copper etchings titled “Life Studies of the Great Army,” which garnered significant acclaim upon its release in 1876. (Click here to view a selection of these etchings.) He also created a number of oil paintings, including Civil War scenes. While most of these have not survived, a dozen of these paintings—all pertaining to the Battle of Gettysburg, and presented below—are still extant, preserved today by the Library of Congress.