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    Description

    Abraham Lincoln: A Rare Pair of Bronze Finish Casts of his Hands by Volk. These life-sized casts were taken by Volk in 1860 at Springfield, shortly after Lincoln's nomination for president. He wanted Lincoln to hold something in his right hand, and since no other object was at hand, Lincoln whittled a section from a broom handle, which he is seen grasping. The candidate's right hand is noticeably swollen compared to the left, a condition that Volk attributed to hours of hand shaking by the candidate. Volk also made two life masks of Lincoln, one in 1860 the other near the end of his life. The latter bears such a mournful and careworn expression that it is often misdescribed as a death mask. But in reality it merely demonstrates the toll the war had taken on the great man. This pair of hands is made of some pottery or plaster-like material coated with a heavy painted finish that convincingly replicates bronze. On the flat surface where cut off at the wrist of each is incised script: "This cast of the hand of Abraham Lincoln was made from the first replica of the original made at Springfield, Ill. the Sunday following his nomination for the presidency, 1860". Stamped into the flat surface on one of the hands, in tiny block letters is "M. VA STUDIOS". Our research has failed to determine an exact dating for this issue, but they certainly have a convincing "feel" of considerable age. Several minor surface flakes have acquired a patina of convincing age, and we would be surprised if these do not date back to the turn of the century, if not earlier. But for the minor flaking, condition is excellent. It is impossible to convey by catalog photographs the poignant presence of these historic casts. An important addition to any Lincoln collection or an arresting display for one's desktop.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    February, 2007
    26th-27th Monday-Tuesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 6
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,133

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