Description: This photograph shows a pair of well-worn brown leather riding boots of medium height, one boot shown on its side with sole visible, the other standing as seen from the rear.
Historical Note: Union Colonel John T. Wilder of Indiana was the commander of the "lightning" brigade, whose presence critical to the success of actions around Tullahoma, Chattanooga, and Chickamauga in the summer and fall of 1863. At the conclusion of the war, Wilder was promoted to Brigadier General for meritorious service. He parlayed a successful iron business in Chattanooga into a political career and was elected Mayor of Chattanooga in 1871. This pair of boots might well have been ordered by Wilder from a Tennessee shoemaker during the course of the war. An unrelated post-war claim filed in upper East Tennessee, in Hawkins County, by an African American saddler and harness maker listed custom-made boots for Union soldiers as one of the items for which he had been promised payment.
Institution: Tennessee State Museum
Publisher: Digital Initiatives, James E. Walker Library, Middle Tennessee State University
Rights: Images reproduced on this website are intended for individual, educational use only. For research inquiries about specific objects or requests for high resolution images, contact the Tennessee State Museum.