Sinking of USS Cumberland by CSS Virginia

Creator: Leslie's Weekly magazine

Context: This 1862 engraving illustrates the sinking of a Union warship by the CSS Virginia, the first ironclad ship produced by an American navy. Leslie's Weekly was an illustrated magazine that became popular in part because of its large number of illustrations.

Audience: Leslie's Weekly was an extremely popular magazine among the American middle and working classes.

Purpose: To illustrate and dramatize a naval battle for the American public.

Historical Significance: This drawing shows how most Americans received their news about the Civil War. The growth of the American newspaper and magazine industries meant the public received information during these years more quickly than it ever had before.