One Hundred and fifty-five years ago, the first widely photographed war began. This war was known as "The Boy's War" or more commonly, The American Civil War.
It is estimated that 20% of all Civil War soldiers, were younger than 18 years old. Because of their young age and size, most were given uniforms too large for them. Edward Black, eight years old, and Johnny Clem, age eleven, were prime examples.
Although these images do not specifically tell the story of Edward or Johnny Clem, "The Drummer Boy of Chickamauga", they do tell the story of all the young boys, North and South, who took up arms during the Civil War. As casualties climbed during the Civil War, more soldiers were needed. Recruiters often turned the other way and allow children younger than 18 to enlist. They became musicians, drummer boys, messangers, nurses or the like, but the time would come where most of these young boys, far from home, would need to fight for their lives.
Imagine being eleven years old, again.
Far from home.
Far from everyone you love.
Tired, hungry, cold or intolerably hot.
The noise all around you. Cannon's firing and the smell of gun powder filling the air. Men shouting, some dying, but, you need to keep rattling your drum.
Imagine the fear that would come over you, the strength being mustered to hold your tears back.
You want to run, but you can't. You are frozen in place.
And then, the moment comes.
At age eleven, you need to make a decision.
Life or death.
Visions of your family flood your mind. The laughter of your little siblings in the open field as you play in the fresh air that has a distinct smell of wild flowers and fresh cut hay. The sound of your father chopping wood for the warm fire. The smell of your mother's fresh baked bread. The birds singing their lullaby, and the touch of your mother's gentle kiss on your forehead as she tucks you in for the night.
But you aren't there anymore.
The screams grow loader, the smell of gun powder and blood, stronger. Tears roll down your face.
Placing your drum down, you grab a riffle from the hands of a dying soldier near you, and say a prayer.
This is our American History. These are the images of innocence lost.
Photography: Katherine Seiler, O'Seiler PhotographyMakeup: Katherine SeilerCostume: Katherine SeilerModel: C.S. O'Seiler Photography
For more information in the Civil War please visit www.civilwar.com.
Because I could see all of these things in Amy and Justin when they said "I Do"... I'll let Mr. Marley take it from here...
“Only once in your life, I truly believe, you find someone who can completely turn your world around. You tell them things that you’ve never shared with another soul and they absorb everything you say and actually want to hear more. You share hopes for the future, dreams that will never come true, goals that were never achieved and the many disappointments life has thrown at you. When something wonderful happens, you can’t wait to tell them about it, knowing they will share in your excitement. They are not embarrassed to cry with you when you are hurting or laugh with you when you make a fool of yourself. Never do they hurt your feelings or make you feel like you are not good enough, but rather they build you up and show you the things about yourself that make you special and even beautiful. There is never any pressure, jealousy or competition but only a quiet calmness when they are around. You can be yourself and not worry about what they will think of you because they love you for who you are. The things that seem insignificant to most people such as a note, song or walk become invaluable treasures kept safe in your heart to cherish forever. Memories of your childhood come back and are so clear and vivid it’s like being young again. Colours seem brighter and more brilliant. Laughter seems part of daily life where before it was infrequent or didn’t exist at all. A phone call or two during the day helps to get you through a long day’s work and always brings a smile to your face. In their presence, there’s no need for continuous conversation, but you find you’re quite content in just having them nearby. Things that never interested you before become fascinating because you know they are important to this person who is so special to you. You think of this person on every occasion and in everything you do. Simple things bring them to mind like a pale blue sky, gentle wind or even a storm cloud on the horizon. You open your heart knowing that there’s a chance it may be broken one day and in opening your heart, you experience a love and joy that you never dreamed possible. You find that being vulnerable is the only way to allow your heart to feel true pleasure that’s so real it scares you. You find strength in knowing you have a true friend and possibly a soul mate who will remain loyal to the end. Life seems completely different, exciting and worthwhile. Your only hope and security is in knowing that they are a part of your life.” ― Bob Marley
Congratulations Justin and Amy!