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Abraham Lincoln Life Mask by Clark Mills, 1865

Associated person:
Lincoln, Abraham
Mills, Clark
Maker:
Mills, Clark
Physical Description:
plaster (overall material)
painted (overall production method/technique)
Measurements:
overall: 7 in x 8 1/2 in x 9 in; 17.78 cm x 21.59 cm x 22.86 cm
Object Name:
mask, life
Date made:
1865
Subject:
Presidents
Government, Politics, and Reform
Selections from the Abraham Lincoln Collection
Related Publication:
Rubenstein, Harry R.. Abraham Lincoln: An Extraordinary Life
ID Number:
PL*004853
Catalog number:
4853
Accession number:
21843
Description:
On February 11, 1865, about two months before his death, Abraham Lincoln permitted sculptor Clark Mills to make this life mask of his face. This was the second and last life mask made of Lincoln. The strain of the presidency was written on Abraham Lincoln’s face. His secretary, John Hay, remarked on the dramatic difference in Lincoln’s two life masks. He noted that the first mask, produced by Leonard Volk in 1860, “is a man of fifty-one, and young for his years. . . . It is a face full of life, of energy, of vivid aspiration. . . . .The other is so sad and peaceful in its infinite repose . . . . a look as of one on whom sorrow and care had done their worst without victory is on all the features.”
Gift of Theodore Mills, the artist’s son, 1889
Location:
Currently not on view
See more items in:
Political History: Political History, General History Collection
Selections from the Abraham Lincoln Collection
Data Source:
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
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  • Selections from the Abraham Lincoln Collection
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  • Lincoln, Abraham
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  • National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center