DescriptionTad Lincoln: Tintype Portrait and Valentine. An interesting group that provides insight into the close relationship between Mary Todd Lincoln and her youngest son. The first item is a tinted tintype (1.5" x 1.75") mounted within an embossed paper CDV mount. A label of the photographer, J. M. Ingraham of Chicago, secures it within the mount. The verso is inscribed, in ink and pencil, "'Tad' (Thos.) Lincoln 14 years old in 1870". In fact, we believe the portrait was taken in 1867 when Tad was 14 years old. Great condition. Original family portraits of the Lincoln children are excessively rare and usually one-of-a-kind. The second item is a small envelope with embossed initials of the owner "M.L." for Mary Lincoln, on the flap. It housed an embossed doily-style Valentine (some faults) inscribed in pencil on the inside: "From Taddie A. Lincoln Feb. 14th 1867". This is the third item in the grouping. The handwriting is not that of Mary Todd Lincoln nor Tad Lincoln (who had difficulty writing and typically asked others to write for him). Given the envelope that it came in, we believe it was given to Mary Todd Lincoln who, in turn, gave it to her Chicago friend and neighbor, Mrs. Fowler. The identification is likely in Mrs. Fowler's handwriting. We also include a damaged CDV of President Lincoln and Tad.
The valentine is listed on a partial 20th-century Letter of Provenance, a copy of which we include in the lot. It, along with other Mary Todd Lincoln items, descended in the Fowler Family and are here offered at auction for the first time.
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