From the National Tribune, 4/22/1909, p. 8

Famous Civil War Collection to Be Sold.

It has recently become known that the famous collection of 7,000 photographic negatives made by Mathew Brady and Alexander Gardner during the civil war and now owned by Edward B. Eaton, of Hartford, Conn., is soon to be offered for sale to settle an estate, together with the publishing business that Mr. Eaton has developed in the last two years. Many veterans now possess the magnificent and graphic album of civil war photographs published by Mr. Eaton from his collection in 1907, and his efforts have been highly commended by military authorities and veterans thruout the country. The collection is now stored in fireproof vaults in Hartford, and the immense number of old wet-plate glass negatives, weighing about three tons, depicting civil war scenes, groups and portraits that can never again be duplicated, are nearly all capable of making excellent photographic prints after a lapse of 45 years. This speaks for the thoro work of Brady and Gardner, when the science of photography was in its infancy.

Mr. Eaton planned for a great campaign for the enlightenment of the present generation regarding the true scenes and incidents of and the actors in the civil conflict as depicted by actual photographs.

The Army and Navy Journal stated that “this is no doubt the most valuable collection of historic photographs in America.” It is probable that some enterprising veteran of means will see the rare opportunity of obtaining a veritable treasure in this, the largest private collection of civil war negatives in the world, either to preserve or to work out along the commercial lines that Mr. Eaton has started. The various commercial possibilities in the exploitation of the collection is almost unlimited, and offers and exclusive field of operation. It is not known what value Mr. Eaton places on the collection and business, but it will probably go at a sacrifice.


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