The Union League of Philadelphia

I had the pleasure of staying in the country's number one city club this weekend and discovered more ACW paintings than a military museum might have.

Like its sister clubs in New York and Chicago, the Union League of Philadelphia was formed during the Civil War by ardent Republicans and it retains its Republican character to this day with an emphasis on its origins, founders, and famous past members. It seems you cannot even descend a staircase without running into history-writ-large.

The blurred photo below shows Reynolds and a more obscure Pennsylvania general in attention-getting spots.
You pass them to approach a very large (here out-of-focus) George Meade.
But this is just a warm-up because when you reach the bottom of these particular stairs, you will have passed the great proto-Republican, Whig Henry Clay, standing almost a storey high (in frame and normally in focus). The halo is not part of the painting proper.
I am recreating here - in part - an actual walk from my room to my dinner inside the club, where I was destined to encounter Admirals Foote ...
... and Du Pont (photographed badly) ...
... and Generals Burnside ...
... and Halleck, his visage gracing the business center.
This is but the smallest sample of all the ACW portraiture, which collection is bound to include almost all of your Northern favorites.

I was looking for my own favorite among all the Pennsylvania notables and was a little baffled at not finding him when it suddenly occurred to me - but of course, McClellan was not only a Democrat, he was THE Democrat of the war. It took a little time and a little Kremlinology to figure out this omission.

Having mentioned "museum," note that the League has its own and the exhibition in place now is called "1865: Triumph and Tragedy." The public is admitted to the museum (only) two days per week.

I did not happen to visit the League's own golf club (Torresdale) and cannot vouch for historical contents of that location.

The city premises do boast a smoking bar, however, with windows overlooking Broad Street and this statue of a member of the 1st Pennsylvania, recently outfitted at Banana Republic. Enjoying my smoke at the window, watching the street and the statue, a few tourists happened by to take both of our pictures (mine inadvertently).

The nicest bar feature was this painting done with a sense of humor.

Smoke 'em if you got 'em. Cheers!