In 1855, when Henry W. Halleck married Elizabeth Hamilton, he was a wealthy and respected California lawyer, director of a bank and two railroads, and part owner of one of the richest mercury mines in the world. He served in the California Territory during the Mexican American war, and eventually helped draft the state's new constitution. In the early 1840s, Halleck wrote a modern guide to warfare based on French military theory. Halleck's book became a text at West Point, and led Winfield Scott , (among others) to view him as one of the military's leading strategists. Scott summoned Halleck and his family to Washington in 1861. Elizabeth Halleck, granddaughter of Alexander Hamilton, attracted the interest and curiosity of the public. She was a natural subject for Brady's camera and for E. & H. T. Anthony's series of cartes de visite devoted to the new celebrities created by the early years of the war.
Elizabeth Hamilton Halleck
lifedates unknown
Mathew Brady Studio
Albumen silver print
(carte de visite), 1862
8.6 x 5.4 cm (3 3/8 x 2 3/16 inches)
National Portrait Gallery,
Smithsonian Institution,
Washington, D.C.