Society of Fine Arts, Inc., NY

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A.J. Fries

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“The Gettysburg Address”

Vintage 1927 Embossed Color Halftone Print with Gold Metallic Ink of Abraham Lincoln’s famous speech, “The Gettysburg Address”. ‘Copyright 1927-Society of Fine Arts, Inc. N.Y.’, as appears printed in blue ink lower left in the outer margin area, and ‘A. & G. MUNGO - MCMXXVI’ (1926), as appears printed lower right respectively (A. & G. for Antonio & Giuseppe Mungo, NYC, who were the artists). The Print is on a medium-weight cream-colored wove paper stock

The original illuminated ‘Gettysburg Address’ memorial parchment drawing took the Mungo brothers over a year to produce. And what’s really interesting & very cool is that it was specifically made as a gift to President Coolidge by Antonio & Giuseppe Mungo, presented to him by the Italian Republican League of New York, and went on permanent exhibition in Washington on Lincoln’s birthday, Saturday, February 12, 1927. The photograph below shows the two Mungo brothers, along with the delegation of the Society of Fine Arts, presenting a framed facsimile of the original drawing to President Coolidge at the presentation ceremonies held on the White House lawn. Excerpts from an old newspaper stated, “GIFT TO PRESIDENT. This memorial parchment, illuminated in several colors by Antonio and Giuseppe Mungo, New York artists, will be presented today to President Coolidge by the Italian Republican League of New York in one of several ceremonies in which residents of New York will honor the memory of Abraham Lincoln…The illuminated Gettysburg Address in this frame is a facsimile of the priceless original Mungo parchment, which was presented to President Coolidge, for permanent exhibition in Washington, on Lincoln's Birthday, February, 12, 1927. The above photograph, taken on the White House lawn, shows the President and the delegation from the Society of Fine Arts at the presentation ceremonies.”

This print features gorgeous multi-colored leaf decorations around the outside areas, and small vignette portraits & images around the entire outer border area to include (going clockwise from upper left); ‘Gen. U.S. Grant’, ‘U.S. Great Seal (Eagle)’, ‘Gen R.E. Lee’, ‘1st National Flag of the Confederacy (1861)’, ‘Soldiers Nat. Mon.’, ‘Abraham Lincoln’, ‘Lincoln Memorial’ and the ‘U.S. Flag, (36 stars, 1865-67 [I think?])’. This print also features embossed areas (raised) of the outer border-lines and also includes embossing of the title and the ‘dropped-capital’ letter “F” which starts Lincoln’s speech. The embossed borders have a nice antiqued gold metallic ink printed on top of them as well as for the title and the ‘dropped-capital’ letter as well. The Society of Fine Arts in conjunction with the Welfare Engineering Company also published a book with the same title in 1926 titled, The Gettysburg Address, with drawings by A. & G. Mungo.

(Written, compiled & arranged in parts by Mark Strong of Meibohm Fine Arts, Inc., East Aurora, NY,, sources:, online digitized files, Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address: Memorials; Excerpts from newspapers and other sources illuminating aspects of this most well-known Presidential speech, from the files of the Lincoln Financial Foundation Collection, 2012;, image from, Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address: Memorials; and, online digitized newspaper article, The Pittsburg Press, “Coolidge is Given Gettysburg Speech.”, Pg. 2 News Section, Sunday Morning, February 13, 1927.)