Back to Exhibition

Military Map of Philadelphia, 1861-1865

Important buildings and sites are keyed by numbers to the map. A triangle incased in a black square indicates cavalries and regiments. The letter H incased in a black square indicates a hospital. The letter F incased in a black square indicates a fort.

One of the prints found in the series titled "Old Philadelphia: artistic reproductions from drawings" by Frank H. Taylor. Link to site with detailed information on the print series:


Below are excerpts from “Civil War Philadelphia” By Anthony Waskie , "Civil War News: For People With An Active Interest in the Civil War Today", August 2007

Philadelphia, birthplace of the Nation, is often noted as a shrine of the Revolutionary War, first capital of the Republic, and the colonial city of William Penn. Few realize however, that the city played a most significant and vital role in the American Civil War, earning it the title of "Arsenal of the North."

The might of the city's manufacturing base and heavy industries fired by anthracite coal created the iron and steel that produced weapons, ordnance, locomotives and rails that served the war effort. Uniforms, blankets and woolens, leather products, ambulances and other military supplies that brought ultimate victory were also manufactured here. Some would even say that the locomotives produced by Matthias Baldwin alone were indispensable to victory.

At the outbreak of hostilities in 1861, Philadelphia was the second largest city in the country and the closest urban center to the war front. As a major transportation hub, manufacturing center, and site of the finest civilian hospitals and medical schools in the nation, and later in the war the largest military hospitals, the city was destined to become crucial to the war effort.

Civic associations such as the Union League, Sanitary Commission, Christian Commission and its Great Central Fair, made heroic efforts to support the soldiery at home and at the front.

Philadelphia had always been home to the largest free Black community in the North. It was a center of Abolitionism, a safe haven and support for the Underground RR and a destination for fugitive slaves. After War Department authorization, large numbers of "Colored" Troops (as they were then known) were recruited from Philadelphia and vicinity and trained at nearby Camp William Penn.

By war's end over 12,000 African-American soldiers had been sent to the war front, proving their valor and courage in battle and contributing greatly to winning the war, and succeeding in emancipating their Southern brethren in bondage.

Philadelphia had one of the largest and oldest navy yards in the country, as well as many private ship yards. In addition to building many fine warships for naval service, the city was also home to several major military facilities, including armories and arsenals.

Anthony "Andy" Waskie, Ph.D., is a professor at Temple University and Co-Director of its Civil War & Emancipation Studies. He is President of the General Meade Society of Philadelphia and a officer or board member of several of the groups mentioned in his column, as well as a published author, researcher and historian. He may be reached at awaski01@TEMPLE.EDU

 To link to the article:

Record Details

Title: Military Map of Philadelphia, 1861-1865


Drawn by Frank H. Taylor

View full details.
Back to Exhibition