While Abraham Lincoln’s public image was defined by his signature stovepipe hat, his private, more casual nature is highlighted in the newest exhibit at President Lincoln’s Cottage. Meetings at the Cottage were often impromptu and informal, and Lincoln was known to greet guests while wearing carpet slippers. An original pair of Lincoln’s own slippers is on public display at President Lincoln’s Cottage from July 29, 2019 through January 31, 2020; the slippers are on loan from the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Library & Museums in Fremont, OH.
“One of our favorite recollections of Lincoln’s time here was recorded by an Englishman in 1864, who made it clear that he was surprised that the United States President would greet visitors with his hair ruffled and ‘feet enveloped in carpet slippers,’” said Erin Carlson Mast, CEO & Executive Director of President Lincoln’s Cottage. “It was an impromptu visit, but President Lincoln managed to charm his visitors, articulating what he thought made this country so great, why it was important to hold the Union together. The Cottage served as the setting for some of Lincoln’s most important decision making – most notably the development of the Emancipation Proclamation – but it also became a home and a place of respite for Lincoln and his family. Today, the Cottage allows visitors to walk in Lincoln’s slipper-covered footsteps to better understand Abraham Lincoln, the private man and the president.”
You can view the slippers in the Robert H. Smith Visitor Education Center, Wednesday-Monday with your timed-entry tickets. If you have any questions or comments, please call 202-829-0436.