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WIP Musician 54th Mass. Regt - A.H.Johnson

Discussion in 'vBench (Works in Progress)' started by Nap, Mar 2, 2020.

  1. Nap A Fixture

    Country:
    England
    Hi Guys

    Finally getting back into painting ....finished the 1816 Marine recently ( will post pics soon ) ...to keep mojo going decided to go for a quick paint so went for this

    image.jpeg

    Based on this image

    image.jpeg

    Alexander H. Johnson enlisted at the age of 16 as a drummer boy in the 54th Massachusetts Infantry. He was the first black musician to enlist during the Civil War, and is depicted as the drummer leading the column of troops on the memorial honoring Colonel Shaw and the 54th Massachusetts in front of the Massachusetts state house in Boston. Alex was adopted by William Henry Johnson, the second black lawyer in the United States and close associate of Frederick Douglass. Johnson's original surname was Howard and his mother was a Perry. His grandfather was Peter Perry, a native Hawaiian whaler who married an Indian woman.

    The adult image of Alex Johnson shown below when he was in the Grand Army of the Republic photo taken around 1889. He is wearing a 1st Sergeant Hemenway's coat.

    image.jpeg

    Alex Johnson used the "Major" designation, as seen on the image above, because he considered himself a Drum Major. He taught drums to many students and also established a drum and bugle corps.

    Alexander Johnson died 19 March 1930, at the age of 82, just a few weeks after the 67th anniversary of his enlistment in the 54th.

    In the book A Brave Black Regiment: The History of the Fifty-Fourth Regiment of Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry 1863-1865 by Luis F. Emilio, who served as an officer in the 54th Massachusetts, the following information is provided on the enlistment papers for Alex H. Johnson and Alexander Hemenway:

    Johnson, Alex, Co C, musician, 16, single, seaman, New Bedford, 2 Mar 63 - 20 Aug 65, $50


    The age indicates their age at enlistment, the town was their residence of record, the dates indicate their services and the $50 indicates their enlistment bonus.

    Summary of Alexander Johnson's military service

    image.jpeg



    Current state of play ....flesh all done , coat completed , starting on lacework ...

    Interesting that on the bust it's got a "E" but in the above states clearly he was in company "C" ...yes I will replace I think !


    Will try and post pics .....but really enjoying and going fast on this ...so much reckon I might do a Zulu bust next

    Happy benchtime

    Nap
  2. DaddyO A Fixture

    Country:
    United-Kingdom
    Sounds good K. :)
    Nice to hear that you're caught up in the painting of this one. Press on with it and show us some pics afterwards (Make the most of when your mojo is running smoothly)
    Cheers
    Paul
    Nap likes this.
  3. NeilW Well-Known Member

    Country:
    United-Kingdom
    Nice to hear the backstory... look fwd to seeing the end result.
    Nap likes this.
  4. KenBoyle PlanetFigure Supporter

    Country:
    United-States
    Great backstory. Makes it a much more memorable figure, (y)

    Look forward to more. :)

    Cheers,
    Ken
    Nap likes this.
  5. Nap A Fixture

    Country:
    England
    Hi Guys

    Thanks one and all for comments ...it's always interesting with a name being found

    Wasn't sure about the lacework initially but the photograph clearly shows the one sculpted

    Using this original items as ref...now added the "C" ...using a cut and sanded down Slaters letter with magisculpt additions

    image.jpeg image.jpeg

    Yes!! I was contemplating the bugle horn as well .....but caps are seen with just company letter on

    Off to start lace

    Happy benchtime

    Nap
    KenBoyle and Geoff Charman like this.
  6. Geoff Charman A Fixture

    Nice choice Nap, Are you doing him young or old with all those medals??

    Geoff
  7. Nap A Fixture

    Country:
    England

    As a youngster mate ...bit like me !

    Happy benchtime

    Nap
    Geoff Charman likes this.
  8. Nap A Fixture

    Country:
    England
    KenBoyle likes this.

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