‘Grant at Appomattox
—Lee at Gettysburg
—those are the men for me!’
Thus exclaimed a long-time writer on military matters, after the contemplation of certain portraits that follow these pages.
His criticism halted before the colossal moral qualities of the two war leaders—the generosity that considered the feelings of the conquered general as well as the private soldiers' need of horses ‘for the spring plowing’—the nobility that, after Pickett
's charge at Gettysburg
, promptly shouldered all the responsibility.
Those heights of character, as chronicled in the pages that follow and in other volumes of this History, are heroic, universal.
They surpass the bounds of any period or nation; they link America with the greatness of the ages.
If they, together with the sacrifice and fortitude of thousands more among the ‘Armies and Leaders,’ are made to live more vividly for those who study the narrative and portraits of this volume, and the nine volumes preceding it, their publication will indeed have been justified.
The personal inspiration of the war pictures centers, naturally, in the portraits and groups.
Several hundred of them are presented in the pages following.
Study of them soon reveals a difference between soldier and non-combatant, as expressed in bearing and cast of countenance.
It is astonishing how accurately, after examining a number of the war photographs of every description, one may distinguish in