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  STEVENSGRAPH BOOKMARK WITH AN IMAGE OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN, MADE IN NEW JERSEY BY PHOENIX MANUFACTURING CO., EITHER FOR THE 1876 CENTENNIAL INTERNATIONAL EXHIBITION IN PHILADELPHIA, OR THE 1893 WORLD COLUMBIAN EXPO IN CHICAGO

Available: Sold
Frame Size (H x L): 16.75" x 6.5"
Flag Size (H x L): 10.5" x 2"
Description....:
Stevensgraph (woven silk picture), in the form of a bookmark, made and signed by the Phoenix Manufacturing Company in Patterson, New Jersey. [Signature woven on the reverse.]

The form is straight with a triangular wedge at the bottom, punctuated by a violet silk tassel. The letters and imagery are in red, blue, and black, the detail is excellent, and this is a particularly nice scale. The finely executed imagery features a full breast portrait of Abraham Lincoln in a fanciful medallion of scrolling flora and fauna, all of these in black to emphasize the post-mortem date and mourning. A patriotic federal shield with 13 stars and 13 pales serves as a keystone and is gripped by an eagle bearing an olive branch thrust forward. Note that there are no arrows, as would appear in most renditions, so that the message is clearly one of peace, illustrating Lincoln's role in the Civil War. A 38-star flag is tipped above in respect for our fallen chief, topped with a streamer bearing the "E Pluribus Unum" slogan (out of many, one). At the very top is more floral decoration in a repeating fashion.

In the lower register are the famous words Lincoln used to close his second inaugural address on March 4th, 1865, just 41 days before his assassination. More floral scrollwork was used to complete the ribbon below the verse.

All of the symbolism used in the design is meaningful, including to the count of stars. The bookmark would have been first produced by Phoenix as a souvenir for the Centennial International Exposition in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (our nation's first World's Fair; a six-month long event, held in celebration of our 100-year anniversary of independence). Patterns were not always made then abandoned, and this one was also produced for the 1893 World Columbian Exposition in Chicago.

  An example of this Stevensgraph is documented in a "Collecting Lincoln" by Stuart Schneider (1997, Schiffer Publishing, Atglen, PA), p. Page 244. Schneider incorrectly dates it to 1865, presuming that it was made on the heels of the assassination. The count of 38 stars reflects the actual date of manufacture.

Mounting: The textile has been hand-stitched to 100% cotton twill, black in color, that was washed and treated for colorfastness. An acid-free agent was added to the wash to further set the dye and the fabric was heat-treated for the same purpose. The two-part frame consists of a late 19th century gilded liner, to which a modern, black painted molding with a rippled profile, with gold highlights, was added as a cap. Spacers keep the textile away from the glass, which is U.V. protective.

Condition: There is some oxidation throughout the white silk and some soiling around the eagle.
Collector Level: Intermediate-Level Collectors and Special Gifts
Flag Type: Sewn flag
Star Count: 38
Earliest Date of Origin: 1876
Latest Date of Origin: 1876
State/Affiliation: Other
War Association:
Price: SOLD
 

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