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New display of American art at Detroit Institute of Arts commemorates the Civil War
At the Front, George C. Lambdin, 1866, oil on canvas. Detroit Institute of Arts
DETROIT, MICH.- To commemorate the Civil War and the150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, the Detroit Institute of Arts presents a new installation of American art that explores the themes of the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln and the abolition of slavery. The works will be on view beginning Dec. 27 and will become part of the permanent collection galleries in the Richard A. Manoogian Wing of American art.

The works are:

• Patriotic Bouquet (1861), George Henry Hall’s still life with red, white and blue flowers coming out of the muzzle of a rifle

• At the Front (1866), George C. Lambin’s moving image of a weary Union officer

• The Boyhood of Lincoln (1868), Eastman Johnson’s great historic portrait, on loan from the University of Michigan Museum of Art

• Civil War Scene (1870–71), by William Rimmer, which shows a wounded soldier reclining beneath a tree, gazing at a keepsake, in front of a scene showing carnage from a recent battle

• Sunday Morning (1876), by Thomas Waterman Wood, which celebrates the fruits of Emancipation by showing a young African American girl reading to her aged grandmother

• Abraham Lincoln, The Man (modeled 1884–87, cast 1911), a reduced version of Augustus Saint-Gaudens’ monumental sculpture in Chicago’s Lincoln Park

The Civil War began in 1861, and while the immediate cause was the secession of 11 slave-holding states, most present-day historians agree that the underlying cause was slavery. On Jan. 1, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln issued an Emancipation Proclamation freeing slaves in Confederate territories. The Emancipation Proclamation did not end slavery because it did not apply to slaves in states that had not seceded. But by making the abolition of slavery a war goal, it paved the way for the ratification in 1865 of the 13th Amendment, which outlawed slavery throughout the United States.

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