A few years ago while on a photo assignment in Pennsylvania my client mentioned a trip he once made to Gettysburg, the Civil War battle site, and how powerful it was. Although I had no particular interest in the Civil War his statement resonated, struck a chord within me. I don't know why, my interests were centered around contemporary issues and my artwork more concerned with abstraction than landscape but his disclosure triggered a fascination with this site of sorrow. A few years later I visited Gettysburg. It was brutally cold that week in November (minus 18 degrees wind-chill) but the severity of the weather was most certainly mild compared to the catastrophic event that occurred there in July of 1863. 52,000 souls lost their lives on Gettysburg's hills and fields in a mere 3 days fighting.

Haunted by the memory of those souls and moved by the eloquence and message of Lincoln's address I knew there was work for me to do there. I wanted to contribute my voice in support of Lincoln's resolution that "these dead shall not have died in vain." Unfortunately the "unalienable rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" of all people regardless of race, creed or sex is still today not universal, even in our advanced society. I hope these images will help sustain the dialogue on human rights and to commemorate those who made the supreme sacrifice for those unalienable rights.

Bill Kane

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All Images Copyright © 1998, Bill Kane. All Rights Reserved.