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How the pioneer photographer helped to fortify The lettering on the wagon curtain, “Photographic wagon, Engineer Department,” explains how the problem of preserving the visual teachings of war was solved for the Union Government. Vast strides in photography were being made by the pioneers Brady, Gardner, and Captain Poe. Diagrams and sketches gave place to actual reflections of the engineering problems which were overcome. Here is the first instance of field-photography for a war department. This photograph reveals the interior of Union Fort Steadman, in front of Petersburg, and its bomb-proof quarters in traverses. On the right is a photographic wagon of the Engineer Corps. The attendant is taking his ease in its shade. This photographic outfit was maintained for the purpose of keeping an official record of matters of professional engineering interest, and good use was made of it. In the West, Captain O. M. Poe was performing a similar service as chief of photography of the United States Engineer Corps. General John Gross Barnard was General Grant's chief of engineers in the East. The accompanying set of photographs of fortifications is largely from these sources.

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O. M. Poe (2)
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