$60k for a portrait of Lincoln 'in very good spirits'

The New York-based Swann Auction Galleries promises a star line-up for its forthcoming Signed Historical Photographs sale.

Signatures by the likes of Abraham Lincoln, George Armstrong Custer and composer Antonín Dvorák will go under the hammer on February 11.

President Lincoln photographed in
1863 ($40k-60k)

Lincoln features in a seated carte-de-visite portrait by Gardner, taken during his US presidency.

Below the image, his inked signature, "A. Lincoln", is bold and clear.

The IMAGE_was captured on August 9, 1863 - early on a Sunday to avoid any unwanted attention. It was reportedly one of four photographs taken during the session.

Gardner's portrait shows the President seated, legs crossed, his left arm leaning on a book and holding a newspaper. His right hand is holding his eyeglasses.

"I went down with the President to have his picture taken at Gardner's. He was in very good spirits," noted Lincoln's assistant, John Hay, in his diary of the day.

The portrait carries an estimate of $40,000-60,000.

There are 119 known photographs of Abraham Lincoln in existence. Earlier this month, one of the only 24 images showing the President standing was sold by Freeman's auctioneers.

Almost decupling its $8,000-12,000 estimate, the rare signed IMAGE_sold for $103,000 - undoubtedly a very happy day for the item's seller.


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