Excerpts from Color of Lincoln
" In American history, there
have been only a few exceptionally great Presidents who by their personality
and their influence on their fellow men stand with the highest reverence
with the American public. Abraham Lincoln is one of these with a popularity
that is a worldwide phenomenon both now and in his own time. It was
during the Easter services of 1865, the day after Lincoln's assassination
that America eulogized its "Father Abraham" and the immediate
canonization of the slain president started. A mourning nation embraced
Lincoln as the model of that to which the measurement of great men
is held. It was that sequence of events that catapulted Lincoln into
a larger than life place in the hearts of mankind. Yet even in his
lifetime, he was given familiar nicknames like "Old Abe"
and "Honest Abe". His contemporaries were able to see the
man in a vividness that we can only attempt to capture today. Through
their eyes and the words of the man himself, a perspective of Lincoln
emerges that displays the uniqueness and complexity of the man that
truly marks the color of Abraham Lincoln that endures to this day.
As the years go by, the only personal remembrances left are those
penned during the years of and after Lincoln's life by his contemporaries.
Even as America began to explore the history of Lincoln at the turn
of the 20th century, people became acutely aware of the amount of
information of this remarkable American icon being lost forever.
This first-ever collection of color photos
of Abraham Lincoln is an attempt at rolling back some of the losses
of that personal connection to America's sixteenth President. We no
longer need to see him with the color of our imagination to understand
how his contemporaries saw him. The enclosed photos add that depth
of color where it has never been before.
To say that Abraham Lincoln was a complex individual
is understating the case. In the years that have passed we can now
see Lincoln as a contemporary might have. The black hair in a toss
or the war weariness set into his face as his grey eyes act as an
enigmatic mirror to the soul. The many sittings the photographs show
a larger mystery where he sits still with a Mona Lisa expression on
The Color of Lincoln offers a look at Lincoln
in a new form, both in vision and description. It also gives a look
into a different time when things occurred more slowly. The advances
of technology like the telegraph, the railroad and hot air balloon
impacted Lincoln's culture society and life; much as change affects
us today. To be able to more vividly see the photographs of the past
in color and explore Abraham Lincoln's legacy through the reminiscences
of his contemporaries serves to provide an expanded look at the amazing
character of the man and his legacy."
From "Color of Lincoln"