Government History SOI Blog

Lincoln’s head on Calhoun’s Body

Calhoun and Lincoln
Library of Congress images

Seems photo retouching is nothing new and goes back to the earliest days of photography.

After Lincoln’s assassination, there was a dearth of “heroic-style” pictures of the president. So one portrait painter got creative. On a print of the late president, Thomas Hicks superimposed Lincoln’s head onto the body of John C. Calhoun—the virulent racist and slavery proponent who did not exactly see eye-to-eye with the 16th president.

“The Great Lengths Taken to Make Abraham Lincoln Look Good in Portraits,” by Michael Waters

Great article on this subject:

Where I first heard this info:

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