21st Century Frames for Abraham Lincoln

This year marks the 150th anniversary of the death of Abraham Lincoln, who has long been reckoned one of the greatest ever Presidents of the United States. There is bound to be plenty of talk about his political achievements in the coming months, but what about his fashion sense?

Well, judging from his attire in surviving photographs, he wasn’t particularly showy – despite how often he has been posthumously commemorated, like with Washington, D.C. located Lincoln Memorial, pictured above. But he was evidently reliant on spectacles at times, so which ones might he have bought from SelectSpecs if he was alive today? We can have fun speculating!

A unique historical investigation…

Frankly, what we know about the great man’s taste in eyewear is pretty limited, as photographs that we can still see – including the one below – always show him with the same pair. Those glasses are currently on display in an exhibition at Ford’s Theatre, where he was fatally shot in Washington, D.C. and look remarkably conventional by the standards of 1860’s glasses in the US.

Abraham Lincoln wearing glasses

Judging from these spectacles and another pair said to have belonged to Lincoln and periodically exhibited at the Saratoga Springs History Museum in New York, the president had traditional taste in eyewear. The latter museum’s director, Jamie Parillo, recently remarked that Lincoln

seemed to be a very down-to-earth guy, … I don’t think he would have spent a lot of money on his glasses.

What do you think of these glasses, Mr. President?

If he was browsing the range available at SelectSpecs today, the Daniel Day Lewis lookalike (we wonder where we got that idea from…) probably would have been most immediately attracted to these Univo U26 frames. These frames certainly closely resemble the glasses in the above photograph in shape and have a distinctively vintage look.

Univo-Round-Prescription-Glasses-at-SelectSpecsBuy Now »

We also think that the president would have liked the modest, understated appearance of these Mimas E0132 frames. Spectacles like these don’t draw too much attention, but do command respect – making them apparently an ideal fit for Lincoln given what has already been speculated about his preferences in spectacles.

Mimas-Gold-and-Brown-Prescription-Glasses-at-SelectSpecsBuy Now »

Both of these frames include options for lenses with scratch resistant coatings, which Lincoln likely would have appreciated during a hectic presidency, during which he probably hurriedly picked up his glasses pretty regularly. Meanwhile, anti-reflection lens coatings, also available from SelectSpecs, could have left his vision clearer for him to read through all of those important government documents more quickly.

Fancy a bit of time-travelling?

Maybe you like your spectacles stylish but subtle, like Lincoln apparently did. Or perhaps you are a bit of a history buff and just like vintage frames that remind you of a very different time? SelectSpecs can cater for your needs. We offer frames that are old-fashioned in design, but also make use of modern technologies to ensure that they remain practical and not mere eye candy.

Our new Hallmark range combines both vintage and modern designs so you can enjoy the best of both worlds – worlds many decades apart!

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