Lincoln 1860

Lincoln 1860

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Lincoln's Clothing

A few weeks ago, I posted an article about how curators at Ford's Theater moving the clothing that Abraham Lincoln wore the night of his assassination from the museum at Ford's to safe storage during the renovation of the theater.

Here's a very detailed photo of the gloves that Lincoln wore on that fateful night. One can still see the blood stains more than 140 years after the fact. Also shown is the handkerchief he had that night. This photo was taken at the Lincoln Presidential Museum in Springfield, Illinois last year. I'm not sure if the gloves are on permanent display there, on loan from Ford's, or if they are from a private collection. This photo is part of a series in today's edition of the paper.


Mini Choco-Pretzels said...

Hey, I'm so glad I stumbled upon this blog. I'm in the same boat. Not a historian, but infinitely fascinated. Can't get enough, read voluminously. I'll be sure to check in again.

Rob said...

Hi, interesting blog you have. I'm a European historian so now I can also see pictures of the man that's in my books, very nice!

And the blood stains...freaky! But it's a easy way to figure out if the gloves are really Lincoln's now...

Anonymous said...

Nice Blog, for a class i need to dress up as Abe Licoln and now I know what to wear down to the gloves!

Anonymous said...

Nice Blog, for a class i need to dress up as Abe Licoln and now I know what to wear down to the gloves!

Taddy.L said...

The gloves are on Display in the Lincoln Museum in Springfield. The were part of the louise taper Collection previously along with the stovepipe hat. He had to pair in his Brooks Bros. topcoat that evening. One pair was stained, the other pair wasn't. A. Lincoln most likely didn't wear them that night. The "kid gloves" were Mary's thing and he only wore them when shaking hands at events. At least until Mary wasn't looking and then he would pocket them.

R. C. R. said...

Found this blog with a Google search on Lincoln's cloating. perhaps someone could help answer some questions I have on Lincoln's suit coats (not his Brooks Brothers overcoat).

#1 I have no memory of ever seeing a photo of the back of his coat and am currious as to the coat's construction.

Many "sources" claim it was a "frock coat" but I do not see the usual styling elements of such construction. Yes, the coat does have a seam at the waist ala the frock construction, BUT -

Does the back have the center seam with arched seams (a.k.a. "spring") on either side. If there are seams they should be in line with the lower seams of the two peice sleeves.

#2 If there are seams do they continue downward into the lower skirt to form pleats on either side of a center panel?

#3 If the above pleats are present does the center panel have a centered "vent" or was it solid (if it was solid the coat was not meant for wearing when riding horses)?

#4 And the should seams, which I can't detect in the photos, were they straight across the top center of the shoulders or "bias cut"/"rolled back" towards the rear of the shoulders?

Reason I asked: I've been trying to put together an 1860's coat to wear while doing volunteer work at the Ohio Historical Society events. Currently wearing a WAHMAker Highlander "towncoat" but the styling is of the 1880's. I figure if I construct a coat along the lines of Lincoln's at least I am in the right decade.

But I can't seem to find a photo of the back of his coat.


Joel Lovell said...

Greetings -

I wanted to share something - I had read a book (fiction) on Kindle, by Allen Appel, called 'Abraham Lincoln, Detective' and thought it was very nicely done. I hope this is not too far off-topic for your blog, but this story kicked off a serious interest into the fascinating life of Lincoln. Here is my review:

Knowing how well Allen treats historical settings and the amount of
research he must put into them, I didn't doubt that the shift from
whatever the real history or personality of Abe Lincoln really truly
was, to the way he has woven his story would not be a unpalatable
stretch of suspension of disbelief at all. I suspect he could argue
every little nuance too with historical anecdotes and letters and
other accounts. So when I set out to read it, I set aside any
skepticism that a stranger to Allen's stories might have - and was prepared to
enjoy a mystery that would allow me to enjoy the 'personality' of the
two protagonists in a way that was entertaining and I dare to say,
"Educational". You see, I found myself reading about something or
someone and became curious, and so II would stop periodically and wiki
or Google different people and events and I have to say I was very
impressed with how nicely things dovetailed into the story. I saw the
potential over years of historical events - even after he became
President, for all manner of story's down the road if Allen were to
continue the series.

So as a fan of historical fiction, mysteries, and Conan Doyle's Holmes
- I can truly say that this was very enjoyable and I'd continue to
read Herndon's, I mean, Allen's accounts of Lincoln & Herndon's
adventures. Allen is the closest thing to time traveling that a person
can experience, because in spite of the fictional mechanisms of time
travel in his other sci-fi novels or the secret investigative life of a gas light era president,
Allen brings to life those times in a way that is very enjoyable and

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