Gen. Thomas J (Stonewall) Jackson’s Funeral, VMI, May 15, 1863
Painting by Mort Kunstler
Acclaimed Civil War Artist Mort Kunstler has created a story of the much esteemed Stonewall Jackson in three paintings. “Road to Glory” shows Jackson leaving the Virginia Military Institute at the head of the Cadet Corp at the beginning of the war. “Final Visit” depicts Robert E Lee at Jackson’s grave in Lexington, VA.
“Last Tribute of Respect” Mort Kunstler
This limited edition collector piece “Last Tribute of Respect” shows Jackson again leaving VMI for the last time . . . in his coffin.
Confederate General Thomas J Jackson was accidentally wounded by friendly fire during the Battle of Chancellorsville. Eight days later he was recovering from an amputation, but succumbed to pneumonia on May 10, 1863. Many tributes were printed and spoken for the man that many considered a national treasure. The Richmond Times Dispatch attempted to sum up the grief of the South stating: “Words have no power to express the emotion, which the death of Jackson has aroused in the public mind.”
Mort Kunstler took on the challenge of telling the story in this painting with his usual eye for detail and historical accuracy. Kunstler chose the moment on May 15th when the casket was brought out of VMI through the Washington Arch and loaded onto the caisson headed to the funeral and burial.
Says Mort of his painting techniques- “By using age old artistic devices, (darkest dark against lightest light), I made the eye go where I wanted it to go. I also incorporated the use of perspective lines, including the wagon wheel tracks, which lead straight to the center of interest. The brightest colors in the painting also add to the one goad of telling the story.
The group on the left is a cross section of the civilians who came to Lexington for the ceremonies that day: women, children, and old men.
The flags also tell a story by themselves. We see the Virginia flag and the first National Flag on the left. The coffin is covered with the second National Flag, reported to be the very first one to be put into use. The VMI flag with its color guard is on the right as well as the Confederate Battle Flags in the background.”
Kunstler concludes “The procession that followed the caisson was made up of the Stonewall Brigade, wounded warriors, dozens of honorary pallbearers, the entire Cadet Corps, officials from every level of government, thousands of civilians, men women and children, Confederate officers, family and friends.”
Picture Perfect gallery & framing has Last Tribute of Respect in it’s large stock of Civil War Art prints.