Lincoln Kaleidoscope

Mary Todd Lincoln with Abraham Lincoln’s “spirit”



Facts about this object

After the deaths of her son Willie and her husband, Mary Lincoln found comfort in Spiritualism, which preached that the dead and living were separated by only a very thin veil and that the dead watched over the living.

“Spirit photographer” William Mumler, who took this photograph, was tried for fraud in New York in 1869, but was acquitted because the prosecution could not prove how he created the “spirits” in his photographs.


CDV, Mary Todd Lincoln, seated, head and torso, hands in lap, wearing mourning gown and bonnet, with spirit figure of Lincoln behind her resting his hands on her shoulders
Holding Institution:
Lincoln Financial Foundation Collection, Allen County Public Library, Fort Wayne, Indiana, Fort Wayne, Indiana
Item ID:
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