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“Surrender of a Confederate Soldier” by Julian Scott

Surrender of a Confederate Soldier - Smithsonian American Art Museum

“Surrender of a Confederate Soldier” by Julian Scott

“Surrender of a Confederate Soldier” by Julian Scott depicts a wounded soldier of the Confederate States Army in the American Civil War, waving a flag of surrender. The soldier is accompanied by a black man, presumed to be the soldier’s slave, and a woman holding an infant assumed to be his wife and child. The painting does not glorify war, and instead, it shows the suffering and human sacrifice associated with war.

Painted in the Union States of the North, this painting is part of a genre of images that depicted the emotional trauma of the South’s defeat, the uncertainty of their future, and the possibility of peaceful long-term reconciliation between the North and South.

Scott was a Civil War artist who served as a Union Army drummer during the American Civil War, where he received America’s highest military decoration, the Medal of Honor, for his actions in battle.

Surrender of a Confederate Soldier

  • Title:                 Surrender of a Confederate Soldier
  • Artist:               Julian Scott
  • Year:                 1873
  • Medium:          Oil on canvas
  • Dimensions     19.5 × 15.5 in (49.5 × 39.4 cm)
  • Museum:          Smithsonian American Art Museum

Julian Scott

  • Artist:                 Julian A. Scott
  • Born:                  1846 – Johnson, Vermont
  • Died:                  1901 (aged 55) – Plainfield, New Jersey
    Nationality:        American
  • Notable works:

A Tour of the Smithsonian American Art Museum

A Tour of the Museums in Washington, D.C.


“We don’t even know how strong we are until we are forced to bring that hidden strength forward. In times of tragedy, of war, of necessity, people do amazing things. The human capacity for survival and renewal is awesome.”
– Isabel Allende


Photo Credit: 1) Julian Scott [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons