Here is a poignant artifact I saw on display at the Atlanta History Center: “Child’s Costume.”
Note the ribbon on the lapel: “My father was a soldier.”
According to the caption at the museum:
“Modeled on a Union soldier’s uniform, this costume was made for a little boy whose father had been killed in the war. The suit was a reminder of his father’s death; it was probably worn at charity events for veterans’ widows and children. The names of the child and his father are unknown.”
My own five-year-old, Maxwell, isn’t much larger than this, which made it all the more impactful to me.