National picture. Behold oh! American, your sons the greatest among men / O. Knirsch, Chgo. ; lith. by Chas. Shober, Chicago.
One of the numerous patriotic apotheosis scenes produced in the months following the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. (The Library's impression of "National Picture" was deposited for copyright on July 18, 1865--three months after Lincoln's death.) As in many of these prints, the artist eulogizes the martyr Lincoln by comparison with George Washington. Here the two men stand on a miniaturized continent of North America over which ominous dark clouds part and give way to the divine light of Providence. The words "Under Providence Washington Made and Lincoln Saved Our Country" appear in the sky. The two figures flank a shield of stars and stripes, which they support and which rests on the symbols of war: a cannon, sword, cannonballs, and shells. Washington holds in his hand the Constitution, and Lincoln his Proclamation of Emancipation. A second, smaller version of the print, drawn by Louis Kurz, was copyrighted later the same year by Shogren and was also printed by Shober. (See "National Picture," no. 1865-8.)
Title from print.
Signed on stone on lower right: O. Knirsch.
"Entered according to Act of Congress in the year 1865 by E. Shogren, in the Clerks Office of the District Court of the U.S. for the Northern District of Illinois."
Inscribed in ink at top left and in pencil on verso: 1649.
Inscribed in pencil on lower left: 28972.
Stamped on lower left: Copyright Library Nov. 22 1865.
Published in: American political prints, 1766-1876 / Bernard F. Reilly. Boston : G.K. Hall, 1991, entry 1865-7.