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“War and Peace” Tintype Exhibit to Open at NMMC

May 16, 2014

Triangle, VA – The National Museum of the Marine Corps hosts the temporary exhibit War and Peace, a collection of 52 tintype portraits of active duty military and veterans from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, and Marines “as a kind of confessional before the camera”  through Dec. 1, 2014.

Exhibit creator Melissa Cacciola photographed sixteen men and nine women of various backgrounds, ages, and roles in the armed forces in uniform and civilian attire in an exploration of war, identity, and what serving in the armed forces means.
 “War and Peace makes visible the present-day faces of those in service, a cross­ section of our society that we may not often have the chance to meet. Through the tintype, our humanity--epic and small--becomes transfixed by the intrinsic characteristics of one of the earliest photographic processes,” Cacciola says of her work.

Tintype portraiture dates back to the U.S. Civil War and is one of the earliest photographic processes. Its special place in military portraiture began when Matthew Brady brought his photographic darkroom to the battlefield to document the First Battle of Bull Run in 1861.

“I began War and Peace during the anniversary year of September 11th as a way of reflecting on how this event impacted the nation and New York City,” Cacciola says.  “Many of the people I photographed for my project enlisted because of 9/11.  We often talk about warfare in technological terms, but there is a human side to it.  I wanted to create intimate portraits.  And considering the origin of tintyping, it was also a unique opportunity to explore the rich history of the tintype and its beginnings documenting the Civil War.”

The National Museum of the Marine Corps is located at 18900 Jefferson Davis Highway in Triangle, Va. and is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily except December 25.  Admission and parking are free.  For more information please call 703 784-6107 or visit the Museum’s website at

The Marine Corps Heritage Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit foundation. Your charitable donations to the MCHF are tax deductible as allowed by law.
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