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Friday, February 24, 2012

Civil War Photo Friday: Union soldier of the VII Corps (Department of Arkansas)

This is an unidentified soldier from the Union VII Corps of the Department of Arkansas. The Corps was formed in January of 1864 and got most of its fighting during the Camden Campaign under General Steele.

The soldier carries a "Volcanic pistol" from the fearsomely named Volcanic Repeating Arms Company. This was a lever-action repeating pistol that saw some use during the war although it wasn't as popular as the Colt revolver.

Was this Union soldier from Arkansas, or just assigned there? Although Arkansas was a Confederate state, several Union regiments were raised there. In fact, every Confederate state contributed regiments to the Union army. Support for secession was by no means universal in the South. Desertion was rife and Unionist guerrilla bands operated in many areas. On the other hand, there were Southern sympathizers in northern states, although their activities were limited.

Photo courtesy Library of Congress.


  1. I just watched a Pawn Stars episode that featured a volcanic pistol! It was worth quite a bit.

  2. Ooh! Firearms always interest me. Must be my parents' military blood. enjoyed knowing about the volcanic pistol


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