Proclamation of Emancipation


On January 1, 1863, Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, which freed all slaves living in areas of the nation under rebellion. This freedom ultimately relied on a Northern military victory and the Proclamation did not affect the millions of slaves living in the Border States that had not seceded. It did, however, recognize the abolition of American slavery as a stated objective of the war and allowed Africa-American men to serve as soldiers in the Union Army. This calligraphic portrait of Lincoln is composed from the words of the Proclamation arranged in an oval. Bolded words from the document form the features of the President’s visage. After Lincoln’s assassination, calligraphic portraits such as this one and other works containing reference to the proclamation were in high demand. This 1865 portrait was designed by Augustus Hageboeck and William H. Pratt. Hageboeck, probably a German immigrant, operated a lithographic shop with his brother in Davenport, Iowa, where they specialized in panoramic views of Midwest cities. W. H. Pratt was born in Massachusetts in 1822, but in 1857, moved with his family to Davenport, Iowa. He headed the Davenport Commercial College, where he taught penmanship, a skill he demonstrated in his execution of this work. In 1867, he helped organize the Davenport Academy of Natural Sciences, often including his own engravings in his scientific publications.

To view the original text of the Emancipation Proclamation Click Here.

Date Made: 1865

Depicted: Lincoln, AbrahamMaker: Hageboeck, APratt, W. H.

Location: Currently not on view

Place Made: United States: Iowa, Davenport

Subject: Communication, letter writingChronology: 1860-1869Reform MovementsBlacksReferenced: Civil WarRelated Event: Civil War


See more items in: Home and Community Life: Domestic Life, American Civil War Prints, Art, Domestic Furnishings


Exhibition Location:

Credit Line: Harry T. Peters "America on Stone" Lithography Collection

Data Source: National Museum of American History

Id Number: DL.60.2624Catalog Number: 60.2624Accession Number: 228146

Object Name: LithographObject Type: Lithograph

Physical Description: paper (overall material)ink (overall material)Measurements: image: 12 1/4 in x 9 in; 31.115 cm x 22.86 cm


Record Id: nmah_324929

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