CDV featuring a soldier with all four limbs amputated, standing with crutches and wearing civilian clothing. Credited to Couch, Delaware, OH, and with soldier's story printed on verso. Printed story identifies the "unfortunate soldier" as Benjamin Franklin, a man who "lost all his limbs by freezing while crossing the Plains from Fort Wadsworth, Dakota Territory, to Fort Ridgley, Minnesota..." Franklin sold photographs of himself in order to raise funds to support his family after the war.
Benjamin Franklin Work, the given name of the man featured in this CDV, enlisted in Company F, 13th Iowa Volunteer Infantry, in December of 1861, and began serving in February of 1862. Work was wounded during the Battle of Shiloh in April of 1862, and was listed as a deserter shortly thereafter along with another Iowan soldier. Though it is unclear what exact path Work took between the time of his desertion and December of 1862, records indicate that he enlisted that month in Company L of the 1st Minnesota Mounted Rangers as "Benjamin Franklin." The following year, he joined the rising 2nd Minnesota Cavalry, in which regiment he conducted patrols in parts of Minnesota and South Dakota. It is during his service in this region that Franklin experienced the nearly fatal freezing episode that led to the amputation of all four limbs and his eventual designation as an "unfortunate soldier."
CDV with some surface soil and wear to edges/corners. Possible Ink splotch near upper edge of mount verso along with pencil inscriptions (possible collection/cataloguing numbers).
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