Whenever I create a character, I like to have a face to inspire me. My forthcoming novel, Let Me Fly, includes a Jewish Freedmen's Bureau agent who has just mustered out as the Captain of a black regiment.
You can get an overview of the Freedmen's Bureau here, since it figures so much in the story, but today I want to share two real men whose faces inspired the character of Captain Lewis Hart. Links only, alas, since the pictures are copyrighted.
Captain Abraham Cohn, recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor, who looks like a Jewish version of General Grant in this image.
Private Joseph A. Joel, best known as the writer of a letter about the travails of Passover in the Civil War field. Very dashing!