The Riots in New York: The Mob Burning the Provost Marshall's Office, July 13, 1863


The Riots in New York: The Mob Burning the Provost Marshall's Office, July 13, 1863

The Confederacy did not possess the necessary resources for publishing any illustrated paper comparable to Frank Leslie's or Harper's Weekly. Although few southerners ever saw it, The Illustrated London News supplied pictorial coverage from the southern perspective. Its artist-correspondent Frank Vizetelly covered the war behind Confederate lines from the 1861 Battle of Bull Run to the surrender of Richmond in 1865. We do not know if Vizetelly supplied the sketches for the British weekly's pictorial coverage of the draft riots. But, in contrast to the Republican Harper's Weekly, the Illustrated London News's depiction of the destruction of the Provost-Marshal's Ninth District headquarters on Third Avenue and Forty-sixth Street on the morning of July 13th emphasized the scope of the violence--including rioters cutting telegraph wires and blocking a volunteer fire company--without portraying the rioters as animal-like. As in many engravings of mid-century New York, the streets appear wider than they actually were.

Source: The Illustrated London News. August 8, 1863