Ambrotype of Elisa Greenwell with handwritten note

  • Image for Ambrotype of Elisa Greenwell with handwritten note
  • Image for Ambrotype of Elisa Greenwell with handwritten note
  • Image for Ambrotype of Elisa Greenwell with handwritten note
  • Image for Ambrotype of Elisa Greenwell with handwritten note
  • Image for Ambrotype of Elisa Greenwell with handwritten note
  • Image for Ambrotype of Elisa Greenwell with handwritten note
  • Image for Ambrotype of Elisa Greenwell with handwritten note
  • Image for Ambrotype of Elisa Greenwell with handwritten note
  • Image for Ambrotype of Elisa Greenwell with handwritten note
  • Image for Ambrotype of Elisa Greenwell with handwritten note
  • Image for Ambrotype of Elisa Greenwell with handwritten note
11 images
Photograph by
Unidentified
Subject of
Greenwell, Elisa, American
Medium
cased photograph (a): collodion and silver on glass photographic plates, with wood, papier-mâché, and metal case;
note (b): ink on paper
Dimensions
H x W x D (a): 3 11/16 × 3 1/4 × 7/16 in. (9.4 × 8.3 × 1.1 cm)
H x W (b): 3/4 × 2 13/16 in. (1.9 × 7.1 cm)
Type
ambrotypes
portraits
notes
Place depicted
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States, North and Central America
Leonardtown, St. Mary's County, Maryland, United States, North and Central America
Date
early 1860s
Description
A black-and-white photograph of Elisa Greenwell (a) accompanied by a handwritten paper note with identifying information (b). In the photograph, Greenwell is seated and faces the camera directly, with her right elbow propped on a table and both hands resting in her lap. Her hair is pinned up at the back of her head. She wears a light-colored dress with a large-scale plaid pattern, white lace collar and stock, and a dark-colored shawl draped over her shoulders. Her cheeks and lips are hand-tinted in a pinkish hue and a spot of gilt is placed over a pin worn at her center front neck. The ambrotype is housed in one half of a wooden case with a papier-mâché cover in a floral design and painted black. The glass plate is surrounded by a gold metal frame with an oval-shaped cut out. A metal hook for fastening the case to the missing lid is present on the right side of the case.
The accompanying loose paper note (b) has handwritten text in black ink reading: "Elisa Greenwell resident of Philadelphia / runaway from the residence of / William Edelen of Leondardtown Md / in 1859". The reverse is blank.
Topic
African American
Emancipation
Freedom
Fugitive enslaved
Photography
Resistance
Self-liberation
Slavery
Credit Line
Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture
Object number
2015.97.4ab
Restrictions & Rights
No Known Copyright Restrictions
See more items in
National Museum of African American History and Culture Collection
Classification
Slavery and Freedom Objects
Media Arts-Photography
Data Source
National Museum of African American History and Culture