Conrad Wise Chapman Biography
Conrad Wise Chapman (1842-1910), was the son of the Alexandria, Virginia, painter John Gadsby Chapman. The younger Chapman had emigrated to Rome with his family in 1848, but being fiercely pro-South, returned to America in 1861 at nineteen. He joined the rebel forces in Kentucky and participated in the Siege of Vicksburg before being transferred back to his native Virginia in 1862, and then in 1863 to Charleston, where he was detailed to sketch the city's fortifications. These sketches were the basis for a remarkable series of thirty-one oil paintings, which he painted in Rome, depicting the forts and batteries, and were his most notable artistic achievement, as well as holding great historical significance.