Southeastern library displaying Civil War exhibit ‘Life and Limb’
Wednesday, November 6, 2013
by: Rene Abadie
EXPLORING HISTORY – Southeastern students Victoria McCarson, left, and Caitlin Hampton view the exhibit "Life and Limb: The Toll of the American Civil War" that is now on display in the lobby of the university's Sims Memorial Library. The exhibit will be on display through Dec. 13.
HAMMOND – The national traveling exhibit "Life and Limb: The Toll of the American Civil War," is being displayed in the lobby of Southeastern Louisiana University's Sims Memorial Library through Dec. 13.
Curated by the National Institutes of Health's National Library of Medicine, the exhibit explores the experiences of disabled Civil War veterans who served as a symbol of the fractured nation and a reminder of the costs of the conflict.
Beth Stahr, head of reference and instruction at the library and coordinator of the showing, said the exhibit notes the hundreds of thousands of soldiers – many as young as 18 – who were wounded in the war but still survived.
"The exhibit highlights the brutality of operations near the battlefields and the challenges of caring for the wounded soldiers during the Civil War," she said. "It is estimated that about three-quarters of all the operations performed during the war were amputations, sometimes undertaken without anesthesia. The exhibit shows the realities of wartime and the scale of the carnage."
The exhibition is free and open to the public.