Personal Mourning

Mourning lapel watch belonging to Mary Lincoln, the president's widow. She used this onyx watch as her personal timepiece for the rest of her life.
View object record
I feel as tho' I had lost a personal friend.
–Sidney Fisher, on viewing Lincoln's body in Philadelphia

Abraham Lincoln was assassinated on Good Friday. That enabled many to find a spiritual and personal connection to his death. Some viewed Lincoln's murder as atonement for the sins of the nation after years of war and bitterness. Writers like Walt Whitman and Ralph Waldo Emerson expressed their pain and admiration in poetry and prose. Countless Americans wore pins, lockets, badges, and rings as public expressions of mourning and memory.

This mourning ring with its cameo head shaped to resemble Abraham Lincoln was one way that individuals could publicly express their grief and admiration.
Mourning "medalet" with the inscription "Born Feb. 12, 1809/Assassinated April 14, 1865."