This sweeping view of the city of Nashville seen from the landing of the Tennessee Capitol building was made toward the end of the Civil War. In 1862, Nashville was a major Confederate arsenal and industrial city, difficult to reach by land but an easy target by steamboat. When Union gunboats began to race up the river, seen in the distance at the right, Confederate soldiers mounted a defense; nonetheless, the Union captured Nashville that February.
This view of the capitol shows the guns in the hands of the Union army, holding command over the city. The Union dominance is subtly represented here by the presence of the weapons in an otherwise tranquil setting.