Photographers of the Civil War Era: Frank H. Price of Elizabeth and Newark


  • Gary Saretzky
  • Joseph Bilby



This article is another about the generation of New Jersey photographers who began their career during the U.S. Civil War, initiated with the consideration of Theodore Gubelman in the Winter 2020 issue of New Jersey Studies. Please see that issue for a general introduction. This essay is a case study about Frank H. Price, who also served in the Union Army, and although, like Gubelman, Price had a successful business over a number of years, he had different personal and professional experiences that broaden our understanding of life in the Garden State in the second half of the nineteenth century. Experiencing many of the same events as his portrait subjects, Price is an exemplar of the ambitious young men who personified what Ralph Waldo Emerson characterized in 1844 as “the Young American,” who engaged in the marketplace of ideas and commerce in “a country of beginnings, of projects, of designs, and expectations.” Although Price did not live to old age, he made his mark among his contemporaries. His story includes typical and exceptional experiences, triumphs and tragedies. Note: You can find additional Frank Price photos here: