On This Day 150 Years Ago: A Portrait of President Abraham Lincoln

On February 5, 1865, 150 years ago Thursday, President Abraham Lincoln, age 55, sat in the Washington, D.C. studio of photographer Alexander Gardner, posing for a portrait photo. The photograph was to be used by painter Matthew Wilson as the basis for an official portrait, rather than have the busy President sit in person for many sessions. At this point in Lincoln's presidency, the worst of the Civil War was in the past, the end of the conflict in sight. However, two months after this photograph was taken, Lincoln was assassinated, shot by Confederate sympathizer John Wilkes Booth in Ford's Theatre in Washington, D.C. on April 14, 1865.
Read more
Hints: View this page full screen.

Most Recent

  • Alkis Konstantinidis / Reuters

    The Battle for Mosul Enters Its Final Stage

    The Iraqi military says it has reached the final few days of the battle, having encircled an estimated 350 remaining Islamic State militants in Mosul’s Old City.

  • Ted Somerville

    2017 National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest, Part II

    The contest is still under way.

  • Gabriela Bhaskar / Reuters

    Ramadan 2017 in the USA

    Images of Muslim Americans observing Eid al-Fitr and Ramadan this year in New York, Connecticut, California, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey

  • Timothy A. Clary / AFP / Getty

    Photos of the Week: 6/17–6/23

    A heatwave in Europe, floating solar farms in China, the America’s Cup in Bermuda, the Royal Highland Show in Scotland, and much more

Join the Discussion