This painting was done for Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial in 1963 by artist/historian Lloyd Ostendorf who donated it to the park. Since there were no photos or paintings of Nancy Hanks Lincoln, Mr. Ostendorf read descriptions of her given by people who had known her and he also studied the photos of later generations of the Hanks family. He felt that certain physical characteristics are passed from one generation to the next and that by studying these, he had enough clues to create this painting.
Questions for Painting 1
1. Why do you think there are no photos, paintings, or other images of Nancy Hanks Lincoln?
2. Think about sculptures, pictures, or other images you have seen of Abraham Lincoln. Do you think he may have looked like this rendition of his mother? Why do you think that?
3. How hard do you think it was for the painter to create this without any concrete knowledge of the way Nancy Hanks Lincoln looked?
* The image on this screen has a resolution of 72 dots per inch (dpi), and therefore will print poorly. You can obtain a larger version of Painting 1, but be aware that the file will take as much as 45 seconds to load with a 28.8K modem.