Abraham & Tad Lincoln, Albumen Photograph


A Tender and Candid Moment Between Father and Son

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An endearing albumen photograph of Abraham and Tad Lincoln.

Lincoln and his son Thomas (“Tad”) were in Brady’s studio for a series of photographs.  During a lull when a glass plate was being placed into the camera, father and son began leafing through a carte-de-visite photo album on the table next to them.  Brady sensed a tender moment and asked them to stay still while he took the image.

This image was used most effectively after the assassination, just as Philadelphia publisher and bookseller Desilver was doing here with the permission of Brady. Desilver also produced another memorial photograph of Lincoln and his boys on the porch of their Springfield home by borrowing John Whipple’s 1860 glass plate.

The mild “rippling”of the mount is usual, caused by the large albumen which is produced through a collodion wet plate process.  This father/son image is more common at the carte-de-visite size, but scarce in this larger, more impressive, size.  Excellent; clean and bright; very light and small marginal stains are far away from the image and printing.

(Abraham & Tad Lincoln) Albumen Photograph. Brady / Desilver Abraham Lincoln as a Father.  After Anthony Berger taken at Mathew Brady’s studio 9 February 1864.  Philadelphia:  Charles Desilver Publisher; entered by G. Gumpert, 1865. Oval photo 6 x 8 inches; affixed to original preprinted mount of  11 x 14  inches.  A facsimile “Yours truly / A. Lincoln” is featured to the right and below the image.