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The Philadelphia Print Shop, Ltd.Historical Prints

Prints of Abraham Lincoln


Buttre:  Lincoln
"Abraham Lincoln." New York, 1861. 19 x 14 (sight). Steel engraving originally created by John C. Buttre, but a changed third state. Third state; re: Milton Kaplan, "Heads of State." Winterthur Portfolio 6 (1970): 136-7. Trimmed to image. Professionally conserved. Strong impression. Framed.

A full length portrait of Abraham Lincoln in an elegant setting that suggests the White House in Washington. The president is framed by the pillar of strength and the curtain of elegance, while his table contains books, a lamp and a paper. A very elegant chair surmounted by an eagle is behind Lincoln.

Upon closer inspection a nimbus surrounds both the president's head and the lamp from an earlier use of the steel plate. In 1859 the plate had been used to print portraits of John C. Fremont when he was running for the office of president for the second time as a Republican. On the table was a globe. When Lincoln gained the nomination in 1860 the plate was reused by burnishing out the head of Fremont and changing the globe to a reading lamp. At first Lincoln appeared clean shaven in the second state, and soon thereafter the third state was created when the beard was added. $850

"Presidents Buchanan and Lincoln Entering the Senate Chamber before the Inauguration." By "Our Special Artist." Wood engraving and offset text from Harper's Weekly. 16 March 1861. 6 x 9 (image) plus margins and text. Half a folio page. Slight soiling.

Just prior to taking the Oath of Office when the new president was to stand outside the Capitol before the crowd, the new and former presidents met a group of U.S. Marshals. To their right were the Marshal of the United States for the District of Columbia (Colonel William Selden-the only one named) and to their left other marshals. While not said in the text, these marshals present were there for security measures.

This engraving is a scarce piece because it is not large or heroic or exciting; however, it captures the somberness of the occasion as states in the south were withdrawing from the Union and violence was a threat throughout the land. $85

"President Lincoln's Grand March." Stone lithography, colored. Published by F.A. Doggett. New York, 1862. 13 x 9 1/4 (sheet). The musical piece is credited to F.B. Helmsmuller. The sheet is cut a bit close on all sides, the bottom left corner is replaced, and some text at the bottom is cut off. An attractive piece.

A lovely and heart felt portrait of Abraham Lincoln whose flag draped oval portrait stands on a stone base flanked by allegorical female figures representing Peace and War. By this time the war had mounting casualties on both sides, but the tenor of this print was to exhibit determination to persevere. $350

Lesch: Lincoln
"Abraham Lincoln." New York: Rudolf Lesch, 225 Fifth Ave., 1864+. 26 x 19 (image) plus full margins. Steel engraving. See ref. Milton Kaplan, "Heads of State." Winterthur Portfolio 6 (1970): 139-40, figs. 10 & 11. Strong image; three expertly repaired tears. Scarce.

Thanks to Kaplan's article we know that the model for this imposing full length image of Lincoln is a smaller engraved portrait of John C. Calhoun that was published in Duyckinck's National Portrait Gallery (New York, 1864): II, 162. The elements are very similar with the exception of the titles on the documents on the table. Calhoun's documents read, "Strict Construction," "Free Trade" and "The Sovereignty of the States." Lincoln's documents are: "Constitution," "Union," and "Proclamation of Freedom." Spine titles of two books on the table are Jefferson Works. The Library of Congress print was published by William Pate, and this one is by Rudolf Lesch not much is known about either of them.

A strong portrayal of the savior of the country, probably popular among those mourning his assassination. Not found in major publications that should include such a portrait. $1,200

J.C. Calhoun
Compare to: "J.C. Calhoun." 7 3/8 x 5 3/8. Steel engraving. Very good condition. $65

Brady: Lincoln
"Abraham Lincoln. 16th. President of the United States." Credits read, "Photo by Brady" and "Engraved by A. H. Ritchie." Steel engraving. 15 1/2 x 11 1/2 (sight) in archival mat in frame 26 x 22. New York: Derby & Miller, 1864-65. Some slight spotting throughout.

A very strong, patriotic image of Abraham Lincoln emerged at the time of and with the spirit of commitment to the Emancipation Proclamation. When Francis Carpenter was creating his painting and next his engraving of "The First Reading of the Emancipation Proclamation," participants such as Matthew Brady and Alexander H. Ritchie were committed to that publication as well as this portrait of the president. Associate publishers credited on this print were J.A. Elliot in Boston and George & C.W. Sherwood in Chicago. All three were celebrating Lincoln's accomplishment, and the steel plate survived to later reflect his dignity and fame. $1,200

Lincoln oval portrait
"A. Lincoln." Lithographed portrait surmounting a facsimile autograph in a large oval. 14 3/4 x 10 3/4 (sight) after a photograph. Oval trimmed 1/4" beyond the remaining paper. Clean, bright, strong portrait. No references found.

This portrait is based on the 1864 photograph by Anthony Berger done in Brady's studio. It is a large print and one of the most neat in the depiction of Lincoln's hair and clothing of all that we have examined. No hint of the backwoods rail-splitter is here. Rather the image is of a strong and serious man with a mature beard and more hair than any other. The print fits with the message of victory approaching for the North in the Civil War, and it would have been welcomed for those mourning after Lincoln's assassination.

Almost all oval portraits such as this would have been framed. Given the destructive materials used and climate in most homes, the fact that few of this printing are available is no surprise. $750

Washington and Lincoln
"Washington and Lincoln. The Father And The Saviour Of Our Country." New York: Currier & Ives, 1865. Lithograph. Medium folio; 15 x 11. Some old stains, but overall very good condition. C:6510.

Currier & Ives, "America's Printmakers," issued many prints on current political and social themes, and during the Civil War these included a large number with a pro-Union bent. This is one of the best examples of that genre, a print showing George Washington shaking the hand of Abraham Lincoln before the eternal flame of Liberty. This tied together the "Father of his Country" with the President trying to preserve that country, as a Union and as the support of liberty throughout the world. $750

"Abraham Lincoln, Sixteenth President of the United States. Born February 12, 1809. Died April 15, 1865." Stone lithograph. Bust portrait in oval with signature beneath reading, "A. Lincoln." 10 3/4 x 8 1/2 (image). Full margins.

A fine, strong image; probably printed within the year 1865. $825

"The Funeral of President Lincoln, New York, April 25th. 1865. Passing Union Square." New York: Currier & Ives, 1865. Small folio. 8 x 13. Uncolored. C:2206.

Currier & Ives had much success with issuing "rush" prints of important events of the nineteenth century, which provided one of the few sources of graphic depictions for the general public. This is a fine example of this sort of print, showing Lincoln's funeral procession through New York. $575

Currier: Death of Lincoln
"Death of President Lincoln. At Washington, D.C. April 15th. 1865. The Nation's Martyr." Currier & Ives, 1865. Small folio. 8 1/2 x 12 7/8. C:1501.

Currier & Ives had much success with issuing "rush" prints of important events of the nineteenth century, which provided one of the few sources of graphic depictions for the general public. This is a fine example of this sort of print, showing Lincoln's funeral procession through New York. $275

Currier Lincoln
"Abraham Lincoln. The Nations Martyr. Assassinated April 14th. 1865." New York: Currier & Ives, 1865. Small folio. Vignette, ca. 10 1/2 x 9. Uncolored. Paper time toned. In early frame. C:26.

Another example of a "rush" print of Lincoln after his assassination. $675

Death Bed of the Martyr President Lincoln . . .
"The Death Bed of the Martyr President Abraham Lincoln. Washington, Saturday Morning April 15th. 1865, at 22 Minutes Past 7 O'Clock." New York: Currier & Ives, [1865]. Medium folio. Lithograph (black & white). Full margins. Repaired single tear into left margin. Fine impression. C: 1471.

The many contemporary prints depicting the death bed of Abraham Lincoln often showed as many prominent people as would fit into a room. The eighteen people depicted here could never have fit into the room across the street from Ford's Theatre. The room is decorated in fine style for the Nineteenth Century, National leaders depicted in the foreground are from left to right: Gen. Halleck, Gen. Montgomery Meigs, Sec. Stanton, Post Master Dennison, a clergyman, Mr. Colfax, Chas. Sumner, Robert Lincoln, Sec. McCullogh, Sec. Wells, and three surgeons. In the far background and past the doorway are Mrs. Lincoln, son Tad and Miss Harris. The clergyman seated at the bedside records the time of death with his pocket watch. The depiction of furniture in the room includes prints are "The Horse Fair" by Rosa Bonheur and a version of "The Blacksmith Shop" by a British artist. $900

"Abraham Lincoln, Sixteenth President of the United States. Born Feby. 12th. 1809. Died April 15th. 1865." New York: Kimmel & Forster, ca. 1865. Lithograph. 12 x 8 1/2 (sheet). Excellent condition.

A stately memorial print to the assassinated President, issued shortly after his death on April 15th, 1865. Lincoln is shown in a rectangular bust portrait. He is handsome, strong and wears an elegant vest. An example of the type of print based on Francis Carpenter's original that would have hung in many homes of grieving Americans. $550

"President Lincoln at Home, Reading the Scriptures to his Wife and Son." New York: Currier & Ives, 1865. Lithograph 16 1/2 x 12 1/2 (in oval). Framed to archival specifications in original oval frame. Frame features some distressing but better than most and an unusual survivor. Conningham, 4883.

This large oval portrait used a Mathew Brady photograph, taken 9 February 1864, that showed Lincoln reading to his son Tad. The image of Mrs. Lincoln to the right was drawn into the ensemble by the lithographer. It is an unusually large lithograph and shows the president turning to the Biblical chapter of Isaiah.

In Stefan Lorant's Lincoln. A Picture of His Life (Harper, 1952): p. 184, the author claims that Lincoln insisted that the book was a photo album so the public would not think he was merely posing with a Bible. In this case the book has clasps as would a Bible, but that was also appropriate for a large album at the time. An unusual and scarce piece of history. $1,200

F. Schell. "Lincoln Family." Philadelphia: John Dainty, [ca. 1865 ff.]. Steel engraving by A.B. Walter. 8 1/4 x 6 (oval image) plus margins. Slight age toning. Cleaned and deacidified. In original, very well preserved oval frame.

Although not giving proper credit, this picture is inspired by Matthew Brady's famous portrait of President Lincoln reading to Tad. Added to the print is Mary Todd Lincoln and son Robert behind the president who is reading a Bible. We can assume it is a Bible because the clasps on the back cover represent a typical housing for the times. A portrait of the son, Willie, who died in the White House is on the far wall. A lovely and touching print in a contemporary frame. $425

Waugh: Lincoln Family
Samuel B. Waugh. [Lincoln and his Family.] Proof before title. Signed in pencil by William Sartain. Philadelphia: Bradley & Co., 1866. 22 x 28 1/4. Mezzotint with engraving by William Sartain. Printed by Irwin & Sartain. Chine appliqué. Good margins. Superb impression. Faint mat burn in margins with traces of a water stain in upper right corner margin of the chine appliqué; all not affecting image. Else, very good condition. Holzer et al., The Lincoln Image, Fig. 80.

This is one of most famous prints of Lincoln, a family portrait based on a painting of Samuel B. Waugh and engraved by William Sartain. This print was copied by many other nineteenth century print publishers, but none equaled the quality of this rich engraving. Lincoln is shown with his two sons and wife surrounded by elegant furnishings of the White House. The family is grouped around a covered table, upon which lie two books, including the Bible. Lincoln and Tad sit to the left, and above Lincoln's right shoulder is a bust of George Washington, linking the martyred president with the 'father of the nation.' Outside the draped window is the outline of the Capitol dome, completed during Lincoln's terms. Mary Lincoln sits to the right, and Robert stands in the center between his parents. Over Robert's shoulder is a portrait of William Lincoln, who had died in 1862. Waugh makes use of clever symbolic lighting and artifacts, which was characteristic of portrait painting at this time. One symbol was described in a promotional circular, "On the table is a vase of flowers-embracing the Roses of the North, and the Small Magnolia, Sweet Clematis, and Virginia Creeper, which bloom in profusion in the South,-all wreathed in harmony, emblematic of the friendly feeling that should exist between the people of the North and South, in the great vase of the UNION..."

Waugh's details are beautifully rendered by William Sartain, scion of the illustrious Philadelphia family of artists the patriarch of which was John Sartain. The concept and design of Waugh's painting was based on Edward Savage's famous image of George Washington and his family. It is interesting that John Sartain engraved a large mezzotint after the Washington family painting, so here William is following closely in his father's footsteps with his engraving of the Lincoln family. William was able to closely simulate the texture of the rich satins, soft woolens, and lustrous leather. At the time of its issue, this print was thought of as a first class example of print making, selling for as much as $20 for an artist's proof, and $7.25 for a regular print. This is a fine example of an "artist's proof," struck before the title was added and signed by Sartain. Being an early strike, the impression is superb, with Sartain's engraving shown off with a rich luster. As Holzer, et al. remark, "In its day, the Sartain engraving was considered the best print portrait of the Lincoln family." (The Lincoln Image, p. 171) This print was so popular that cartes-de-visite were published using photographs of the print, giving the illusion they were photographs of the actual family. $950

Kelly: Lincoln and Cabinet
"President Lincoln And His Cabinet. With General Grant in the Council Chamber of the Whitehouse." New York: Thomas Kelly, 1866. 18 7/8 x 27 3/4. Lithograph by Antoine (Anton) Hohenstein. Printed by Spohny, Philadelphia. Trimmed to neat line at sides, expertly remargined. Very good condition. Holzer, Boritt, & Neely, Changing The Lincoln Image, Fig. 2.

An interesting print of Lincoln, his Cabinet, and General Grant issued by popular print publisher Thomas Kelly. The basis of this lithograph is Francis B. Carpenter's image "The First Reading of the Emancipation Proclamation," first issued in 1866. Bavarian born Philadelphia artist Hohenstein has made some revisions, but this clearly is a copy. Stanton, Chase, Lincoln, Seward, and Bates are pictured in essentially the same places and poses as in Carpenter's original, as is the picture of Pennsylvanian Simon Cameron (Stanton's predecessor). The room is the same, though Hohenstein removed the portrait of Andrew Jackson and added two landscapes to the wall in the background, and made a few other changes to disguise the piracy. To the basic image taken from Carpenter, Hohenstein moved the image of Wells, replaced Blair with his successor Denison, and in a central position, added General U.S. Grant. Interestingly, he did not show Smith's successor at Interior, but rather both Bates and James Speed who succeeded him as Attorney-General. And, rather than showing a scene concerning the Emancipation Proclamation, this print is supposed to show Grant discussing his campaigns, for the General boldly points to a location on a map placed on the table.

As the war had ended, Kelly also published for sale in the South a Confederate edition of this image, with General Lee replacing Grant, Davis replacing Lincoln, and so forth! This is a wonderful image of Lincoln, as well as an instructive example of the practices of printmaking in the mid-nineteenth century. $850

Ad. Biegemann. "Lincoln and His Family." Philadelphia: William Smith, ca. 1866. 18 x 24. Lithograph by D. Wiest. Very good condition. Holzer, et al., The Lincoln Image, Fig 87.

A very primitive rendering using the theme of Samuel Waugh's portrait of the Lincolns. The publisher wanted to take advantage of the demand for images of the President without investing in a first-hand rendering. Thus his artist based the image of Lincoln on a photograph of the President and Tad taken in 1865. The image was reversed for the print, but because Biegemann wanted to show all three of Lincoln's sons, including Willie who had died in 1862, the image of Tad from the photograph became Willie, and a figure of Tad as a younger boy was added. Robert is shown in uniform, even though he didn't join the army until after the death of his brother Willie, near whom Robert is standing. The heads and bodies of all the figures are out of scale with each other, and the setting is most awkward. That such a print could be produced and sold by a major publishing house is an interesting reflection on the print market of the time, and a strong indication of the demand for images of Lincoln. $400

William Sartain. "Abraham Lincoln." Philadelphia: W. Sartain, ca. 1870. 11 1/8 x 9 1/2 (image) plus full margins. Mezzotint by W. Sartain. Very good condition.

A handsome portrait of Lincoln produced by the mezzotint process by William Sartain. Sartain, along with his father John, was the foremost American practitioner of this elaborate printmaking process for the production of historical prints. His prints always have a strong and rich texture that enhances their aesthetic qualities considerably, and the images are always historically quite accurate. This combination makes prints by William Sartain most desirable, and this example is no exception. $450

T. Johnson. [Abraham Lincoln] Late 19th century engraving. 13 5/8 x 10. Very good condition.

A finely executed profile engraving of our sixteenth president by T. Johnson. $475

Lincoln Family
"Lincoln Family." Photograph: Carte de visite format. Ca. 5 x 3".

A photograph of a composite image using Brady photograph of Lincoln reading to Tad, superimposing image of Mrs. Lincoln seated next to her husband and Robert in military uniform standing behind his father's chair. Note: though Willie's death is acknowledged by his absence from the picture, Mrs. Lincoln is not shown in mourning dress. Cartes de visite, so named for their size (which resembled a small calling card), became popular in the 1850s and 1860s. Using a specially-designed camera, eight different poses could be printed on one sheet of photographic paper, then cut up and mounted on small, pocket-sized cardstock. The same photographic technology that allowed loved ones to exchange likenesses also afforded thousands of Americans the opportunity to own pocket-sized portraits of public figures, including most prominently Abraham Lincoln. $125
GoClick here for a page with cartes de visite of Lincoln and his contemporaries.

Little JokerUnhappy FamilyLove me littleIngenious ThingMelancholy AccidentLast Appearance
Six Satires depicting Abraham Lincoln. These are reproductions of satires that were drawn in 1864 by Henry Louis Stephens who moved from Philadelphia to New York in 1859. He was a brilliant satirist who even managed to lampoon the works of John James Audubon after working for that family. He drew political and social cartoons mainly for magazines such as Frank Leslie's and Harper's during the war. These images appeared in a British magazine.

The six reproductions were commissioned by Townsend and Fuller in 1930 and lithographed by the famous Hoen & Co. in Baltimore. This publisher incorrectly named the artist as "L. H. Stephens" instead of "H.L." An interesting selection that appeared in a city which retained its Southern sympathies into the Twentieth Century. Price for the six $85


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