Thanks to Those Who Share So All May Learn & Enjoy.

As a non-collector of Civil War images and artifacts I would like to take this opportunity to praise those collectors who unhesitantly offer their vast and valuable collections to be displayed for the enjoyment of all. Many of these individuals have spent their time, energy and fortunes acquiring priceless articles of history for the express purpose of preserving artifacts and images for future generations. Their selfless acts have enabled thousands of historians, researchers and readers to discover how history can come to life by the simple association of how stories relate to artifacts and images to individuals. These generous collectors often give permission for their images to be displayed and used for historical and educational purposes at very reasonable terms. Here at quantrillsguerrillas.com our visitors and members can peruse these many and rare images and discover how they assist in telling the true story of William Clarke Quantrill and his guerrillas during the most turbulent period of our nation's history. To the right is an image of an hand written oath for Quantrill man T. B. Webb issued  in 1863.

The Board of Directors of quantrillsguerrillas.com takes great pride in ensuring that all images shown on this website are authentic and true in every detail. As with any Civil War era photographs that surface for first time publication, questions naturally arise as to their origin and authenticity usually from unknowledable or uneducated persons questioning authenticity of images shown. Our Board of Directors always establish provenance before an image is ever seriously considered to be shown and insist on the highest standards in determining the provenance of Civil War period images. Our website is blessed to have on our Board experts in the field of Civil War images and artifacts who are also qualified as certified antique appraisers thus proving authenticity of an image is what they specialize in. Compared with other websites where Civil War images are shown sometimes without the slightest provenance except the collector's opinion our website visitors can rest assured they are viewing actual historical images, documents and artifacts proven authentic beyond the shadow of a doubt.

An example was a recent period photo offered by a writer wishing it to be published in a book. The provenance turned out to be only the author's opinion of the image compared to other photos. It showed two male individuals whom he claimed were Archie Clements and Jesse James. A simple examination of the image showed that both men were displaying cartridge type revolvers. The photo had no known provenance. The period dress proved to be around the turn of the century. Archie Clements died in 1866 and cartridge type revolvers were not invented until much later. Our experts immediately saw these discrepancies and declined to use the image and even after pointing out the discrepancies to the owner he continued to believe the photo to be authentic.

Provenance is where an item came from. Who made it, who were the owners, who else significant handled it along the way. Photos that are found without provenance bring little remuneration or historical benefit. The most desired photo provenance comes when they are handed down by family members. These can readily be identified and when obtained by another party can be easily authenticated.

Ideally the most preferable provenance occurs when both the photo and subject are documented and notarized from the day it was taken, as well as having a documented notarized ownership linage. One of the most reliable alternatives would be when photos and their documentation is kept within a single family and passed down from member to member. Image collectors keep a keen eye out for photos that can be substantiated by actual provenance. When family origin is missing provenance can be confirmed by expert antique appraisers or collectors whose experience in the field will justify the demand for authenticity.

When comparing photos of the same subject some physical appearance may change when photos are taken over a wide span of years. Collectors and appraisers look for distinguishing features that do not change on an individual despite time. For instance facial features like the shape of the eyebrows or the shape of the chin line. Does the subject have full or narrow lips, a wide or narrow nose? Is the shape of eyes the same? Is there similarity in the shape of ears and do the ears either have attached or unattached earlobes? All these help identify a subject to other known images of the same person.

Besides looking at an individual in a photo or the photo’s actual physical appearance collectors make every attempt to retain all known information when purchasing photo images. Also important is if a photograph is identified either on the front or back in period ink. The name of the photographer or the date in period ink would also be helpful. Authentic stamping on the photos is another way that helps document provenance. It is significant that the historical value it represents be maintained. Though not needed for most photos, documentation of provenance can be important for expensive photos or photos where ownership is an integral part of its value. Important provenance can raise the value of a photo.

Provenance does not in and of itself authenticate a photograph, but can be an integral part of authentication. It is a piece in the puzzle. If a photo looks authentic, appears to be the right age, has correct stamping, and an authority agrees it looks authentic or that it was sold by a top dealer or appeared in a reputable auction this will help prove authenticity. When photos are purchased at auction expert collectors maintain all receipts and postal confirmation which also gives provenance accreditation.

If there is no stamping or other identification marks, provenance might be essential for identification of the photo’s issuer and photographer. A practical example of good provenance is buying a rare or obscure photo from a respected and well known dealer. This is making your own good provenance. The fact that a top dealer believes the photo to be genuine is significant. Saving the receipt or other documentation of sale will help if your resell the photo. In this way you will have documentation that it came from a reliable source.

Documentation of provenance can include sales receipts, letters about ownership and history, magazine and newspaper articles, auction catalogs and similar documents.  Provenance can include an expert’s letter of authenticity or other testimony about the item’s identity. The best way to maintain provenance when purchasing a photo from an individual or collector is to keep the mailing envelope with the seller’s name and return address.

Collectors as well as historians should use a critical eye. Most often individuals will argue that the photos they obtain are authentic. So experts must look closely to discern period objects and dress to make sure they are represented as being genuine. Books, magazines and websites are full of bogus images to satisfy self interests. Collectors often limit their purchases to those they know to be honest. When an object is traded between collectors this in itself is another step in the trail in establishing provenance.

We at quantrillsguerrillas.com welcome you to enjoy the images and collections you see on this website and feel free to make comments or ask questions. We look forward to serving you with more authentic images in the future. Below is George Scholl's oath sworn upon his surrender in 1865.

Daniel Boone Scholl was born on May 30, 1843. His brother George Thomas Scholl was born on March 5, 1846. The story of their wartime careers reads like a battlefield report. They took part in virtually every engagement associated with William Clarke Quantrill and his partisan rangers.

The Scholl brothers were from Jackson County and were the great grandson's of the famed pioneer Daniel Boone. Both served under Quantrill enlisting early in the war. Many of their relatives also rode as guerrillas under Quantrill and all had experienced personal atrocities by the Kansas Jayhawkers.

On May 21st, 1865 George Thomas Scholl surrendered and took the loyalty oath at Lexington Missouri. The Provenance on this oath is it was in George's control until he passed away. Next it was handed down to his son, it was kept within the family and it was eventually passed down to Claiborne Scholl Nappier. There is no question that this document is 100% real and correct.

Because Claiborne has been so unselfish it is possible you have seen this oath before, so you may not be aware that these types of oaths taken by a former Missouri Guerrilla are among the rarest of all Missouri guerrilla relics. Paul R. Petersen © Quantrillsguerrillas.com. "Permission should be requested and agreed to before using this copyrighted essay." 

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