The late Garnet W. Jex, artist and illustrator, was a man of impeccable detail.
Of his 50 watercolors in possession by the Sharpsburg Historical Society, Jex's detail goes beyond his brushstrokes.
During an opening of the show, "The Upper Potomac of the Civil War," which opens Friday, Sept. 7, at the Washington County Arts Council in downtown Hagerstown, visitors will be able to see the details that Doyle discussed.
So with an artist who put thought into every line or stroke one can only imagine what Jex would have thought about one detail being overlooked for more than 20 years — one of his paintings is missing.
The painting is called "Panic Below Ball's Bluff." Doyle said it was part of his collection of watercolors on the Civil War that focused on Washington County as well as neighboring Harpers Ferry, W.Va.
The only proof is a black-and-white booklet to show that it did exist.
"We know it was part of the original collection because in the original booklet that was published in 1965 as part of the Washington, D.C. Centennial Commemoration of the Civil War," she said.
"We see this dramatic painting and we see the black and white of it, not the whole thing. That is not in this collection," she said.
They know that Jex still had it in his possession in 1971, when he used the painting as part of a slideshow at the Washington County Historical Society.
"Somewhere between then and 1990, it got someplace else, we know not where," she said.
Doyle said the painting was last seen in November 1990.
And as she is gearing up for the Jex exhibit, she would love to one day have the painting back where it belongs.
"We would love to have it recovered and put it back into the collection," she said.
But now, visitors to the arts council exhibit will have a chance to see some of the collection of watercolors. Doyle said about 40 will be on display of the 50 they have. Most depict Civil War battles or scenes but there are also four illustrated maps. One of the maps will be part of the 40 on display.
But Doyle said what it also shows is not only Jex's passion for the Civil War, but his affection for Harpers Ferry and Sharpsburg areas.
"Garnet Jex loved this particular area, "Doyle said.
Who is Jex?
Garnet W. Jex was born in Ohio in 1895. As a young boy he moved to Washington, D.C., with his mother following the death of his father. The city would remain his home until his death in 1979.