Lincoln’s Resolve: A Union Camp Portrait

Lincoln's Resolve

In this poignant painting by Merrill Coffin, titled “Lincoln’s Resolve: A Union Camp Portrait,” the artist skillfully captures a pivotal moment in history. The painting depicts President Abraham Lincoln amidst his Union army in a battle camp, surrounded by the steadfast loyalty of three soldiers. This artwork holds special significance, being among the first paintings Merrill dedicated to his son Thomas and beloved wife Julie Coffin on their first wedding anniversary in 1974.

The backdrop of the painting showcases a dramatic scene, as a blue cloudy sky merges seamlessly into a vast golden field, symbolizing the tumultuous times of the Civil War. A stately tree adorned with autumn red leaves stands on the left, a testament to the changing seasons and the gravity of the historical events unfolding.

President Lincoln stands resolute, a symbol of leadership and determination. Three soldiers positioned around him reflect the unity and commitment of the Union forces. The camp atmosphere is further enhanced by the presence of a pitched tent in the background, adding an element of both shelter and impermanence in the face of war.

The emotional depth of the painting is heightened by Merrill Coffin’s meticulous attention to detail, capturing the essence of a critical juncture in American history. “Lincoln’s Resolve” stands as a testament to the artist’s skill in conveying the gravity of historical moments while also serving as a personal expression of love and dedication to family.


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