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Posted By: Dave Gaddy on: 05/20/2005 07:16:10 EDT|
Subject: RE: Field Glasses (Gen. Lee's)
Mike, allowing for some distortion for the repro and angle, those field glasses look somewhat smaller than the picture I cited. Maybe it's an illusion (esp. if the caption attributes the set-up to the Museum of the Confederacy).|
But this also serves to point up another problem, and that is whether an item of this nature was available in the narrow period of 1861-1865 that we concentrate on. (No problem if prior to--the problem is with AFTER.) If, for example, Gen. Lee--as President of Washington College in the decade after the war--were given a pair of field glasses, and these later were donated to a museum as "Gen. Lee's," that would be truthful--but misleading for those of us wanting to know about wartime. (I know--I'm preaching to the choir, but we keep getting new choir members.) By contrast, if the item belonged, say, to TJ Jackson (-1863) or JEB Stuart (-1864) we would presume it was representative of the war era to that date. And we also have to remember that, during a long life, some of these fellows just might have had more than one pair!
And so the work goes on. Ain't this fun?