The Historical Art of John Paul Strain
John Paul Strain - Historical Artist
Historical Paintings


Opequon Presbyterian Church
Kernstown, Virginia - Winter of 1862
The Christmas Carol
The Christmas Carol Remarque The Christmas Carol Remarque
Remarques on Lithographic Artist's Proof Print Edition

The years of 1861 and 1862 had been momentous for Thomas J. Jackson. He had gone from being an unknown VMI professor with a Major's commission, to the rank of Lieutenant General commanding the II Corps in General Lee's Army of Northern Virginia. In battle after battle Jackson's army had defeated those who opposed them. "Stonewall" was now one of the most famous and feared generals of the war.

Snow blanketed the countryside on November 22 as Confederate divisions gathered in Winchester. General Lee's communiqués to Jackson made it clear that it was time to consolidate the army, preparing for the Union Army's next move. Jackson's Corps numbered 33,000 troops, the largest he had ever commanded. The task of organizing and preparing the new II Corps was daunting, but the General was up to the challenge and kept on the move.

On an early November morning at the Opequon Presbyterian church, members of the choir practiced a favorite Christmas carol for the passing Stonewall Jackson and his men. With the fate of his army and possibly the South to be decided in the coming days, the beautiful melody of a Christmas carol in the distance uplifted General Jackson and his men as they prepared to leave for Fredericksburg.

Artist's Comments:

Established in 1737 the Opequon Presbyterian Church is known as the "Mother Church of the Valley", being the oldest organized church in the Shenandoah Valley. During the American Revolution the Opequon congregation sent many of its sons to fight in the War for Independence. In 1861 Opequon joined with other southern congregations in the formation of the Presbyterian Church of the Confederacy, sending more sons to fight for southern independence. The church sustained some damage during the First Battle of Kernstown on May 25, 1862, but continued to serve its members until after further damage in 1863 forced parishioners to move services to the stone school house next to the sanctuary.

The Christmas Carol Collection
This is the fourth print in the Lions in Winter Collection

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Lithographic Prints

900 S/N Limited Edition Lithographic Prints - Publisher Sold Out
100 Artist's Proofs - Publisher Sold Out
Image Size 19 1/2" x 26"

Canvas Giclées

75 S/N Studio Canvas Giclées - Publisher Sold Out
10 Artist's Proofs - Publisher Sold Out
Image Size 17 1/2" x 24"

100 S/N Classic Canvas Giclées - Publisher Sold Out
15 Artist's Proofs - Publisher Sold Out
Image Size 24 x 32"

10 S/N Executive Canvas Giclées - Publisher Sold Out
4 Artist's Proofs - Publisher Sold Out
Image Size 30" x 40"

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Historical Paintings