President Lincoln’s fingerprint

Today marks the 200th birthday of Abraham Lincoln. Interestingly a student at Miami University in Ohio recently discovered a rather rare example of Lincoln’s fingerprint on a letter housed in Miami’s library. Thinking about Lincoln’s hands sent me looking for a picture of them from the Lincoln Memorial statue. It turns out there are casts of his hands in museum collections all over the place, made from original casts made in Springfield, Illinois in May 1860, right after Lincoln’s presidential nomination. Tangible tokens of a president in whom so many have invested their hopes — reminds me of all the Obama memorabilia.

You can see some fantastic Lincoln materials in the digital collections of the Library of Congress. They’ve uploaded some of the photos to their Flickr stream. (Read more about the Library’s “The Commons” project on Flickr here.)

A bit blurry but the images help bring history to life don’t you think?

Abraham Lincoln, 1846 or 1847. From Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division, LC-USZC4-2439

Abraham Lincoln, 1846 or 1847. From Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division, LC-USZC4-2439

Abraham Lincoln, circa 1864. From Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division LC-USZ6-2094

Abraham Lincoln, circa 1864. From Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division LC-USZ6-2094

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