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    Description

    Charleston Mercury Broadside: "The Union Is Dissolved". One of the finest specimens known of what is certainly the single most iconic image of the American Civil War. The broadside measures 11' x 21 3/8" (sight) and 20" x 30 3/8" framed. Its has a professionally closed separation from above the "N" in Union up to "Ordained", which is barely visible and of no consequence in our opinion, and a few typical light folds. Overall a beautiful example. As Civil War broadsides go, this certainly ranks near the top of the want list of collectors of this genre.

    With the election of Abraham Lincoln many South Carolinians vowed to leave the Union rather that be governed by a "Black Republican" and face the likelihood of the abolition of slavery. In response, Governor Pickens call for a convention to consider secession, and, on Dec. 20, 1860, the 169 delegates in attendance voted unanimously to secede from the Union. The editors of the pro-secession Charleston Mercury recounted that, "Within a few minutes after the announcement of the secession vote our messengers arrived...in less than fifteen minutes our Extras, containing the long looked for Ordinance, were being thrown off by fast presses and distributed among the eager multitude that thronged under the great banner of the 'Southern Confederacy'." Though many copies of the broadside were printed, very few survived, and in recent auction history none in a condition commensurate with this example. After the war there were many souvenir copies of the broadside made, but there are several obvious points that delineate the original examples: the time of secession on the original broadside is "1.15" while on later editions it has been corrected to "1:15"; an outline around the word "IS" does not appear on later editions; there is broken type at the top of the letter "E" in the word "DISSOLVED" which was corrected in later editions. This specimen, of course, conforms to all of these criteria. A truly remarkable piece of American history, the very first Confederate imprint defining the moment that the American nation was torn asunder. A rare opportunity for the Civil War or American broadside collector.

    Update: We were able to remove the broadside from the frame and were pleased to see the piece has full borders, and measures 12 3/4" x 23". It's fantastic example having just some minor restoration at the top edge, and the closed separation mentioned above.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    February, 2021
    27th-28th Saturday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 8
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,581

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