I was taken with the above photo of an otherwise unidentified S. T. Carter—something about those eyes. It’s like they’re still seeing the war. Click on the photograph and you can see that he’s wearing a number of ribbons and medals. Although I couldn’t find examples of the Robert E. Lee pin and the badge just below, a little research turned up the others.
On Mister Carter’s left lapel is the Southern Cross of Honor, given to veterans by the United Daughters of the Confederacy beginning in 1898. (On the reverse side, pictured above, it reads “Deo Vindice,” or “God is our vindicator.”) You can see that Mister Willis, a veteran of Mississippi with an even more fierce gaze, is also wearing the cross. The star on Mister Carter’s right lapel, meanwhile, is a United Confederate Veterans reunion badge from 1902, and just above it is a reunion badge from 1917. That particular reunion was in Washington, D.C., and above, in the black hats, you’ll see a Nashville camp of veterans representing in the capital. And after the jump some more Virginia veterans.
IMAGES: S. T. Carter by Rufus W. Holsinger (Holsinger Studio Collection, Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library, University of Virginia); George Preston Willis (1840–1918) served in the 26th and 32nd Mississippi Infantry regiments (Genie Holloman); Confederate Veterans, 1917 (National Photo Company Collection; Shorpy); Southern Cross of Honor; United Confederate Veterans reunion badge, 1902; United Confederate Veterans reunion badge, 1917