Boston Art Commission

« back

Click on thumbnails to view additional images of this piece:
  • IMG_0512
  • NEDCC6
  • Lincoln Drawing 1+2 - After2

Abraham Lincoln sketch

Artist:

William Morris Hunt

Location:

Faneuil Hall  

Location

Faneuil Hall
United States
42° 21' 36.2088" N, 71° 3' 22.3632" W

Neighborhood:

Downtown

Type:

Charcoal sketch

Year:

Unknown

Medium:

Charcoal on paper

Collection:

Funders:

Description:

Shortly after President Lincoln’s death, Boston art dealers Doll & Richards asked William Morris Hunt (1824-1879) to paint a portrait of Lincoln with the intention of ingraving it for the print market. Hunt used a White House employee of Lincoln’s height and build as the sitter for the painting, even having the model wear some of Lincoln's clothes for authenticity. The arrangement with Doll & Richards failed to come to fruition, however, and Governor Andrew attempted to have the Commonwealth of Massachusetts buy the portrait - which was met with some controversy among government officials. The oil painting was destroyed when Hunt’s Boston studio burned in the great fire of 1872, but this large charcoal sktech of Lincoln was discovered within the backing of Hunt’s portrait of Governor Andrew when it was removed for conservation in 1996. This preparatory study for Hunt’s Lincoln portrait is an invaluable addition to our knowledge of the Hunt's lost painting, s well as a welcome addition to the City of Boston's collection of Hunt's work.

Audio Description: