Thursday, April 1, 2010

The thing about working in a library is that you are surrounded by great books. Recently I came across this book,
Lincoln, Life Size
Philip B. Kunhardt II
Peter W. Kunhardt
and Peter W. Kunhardt, Jr.
Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 2009

It's a book of photographs of Lincoln, taken throughout his life. Alongside each photograph is a quote from someone in Lincoln's life that gives a unique insight into his daily life, both private and professional. This one I particularly liked;

June 3, 1860, Springfield, Illinois

Photograph by Alexander Hesler

On the same day that Alexander Hesler took this portrait of Lincoln, the artist Charles Barry came to Springfield to sketch the candidate, as he later recalled.

Arriving in Springfield in the afternoon of Saturday, June 3, 1860, I went at once to the Lincoln home. When I rang the bell a very small boy called out: "Hello, Mister, what yer want?" I replied that I wished to see Mr. Lincoln and had come all the way from Boston for that purpose. Then the small boy shouted: "Come down, Pop; here's a man from Boston," and a instant later Mr. Lincoln appeared, holding out a hand in welcome. "They want my head, do they?" he asked, twisting my letter of introduction in his hands. "Well, if you can get it you may have it, that is, if you are able to take it off while I am on the jump; but don't fasten me into a chair..."...How vividly it all comes back to me-the lonely room, the great bony figure with its long arms and legs that seemed to be continually twisting themselves together; the long wiry neck; the narrow chest, the uncombed hair; the cavernous sockets beneath the high forehead; the bushy eyebrows hanging like curtains over the bright, dreamy eyes, the awkward speech, the evident sincerity and patience. (p.44)

No comments: