Two young men, a Briton and a Dane, have devoted remarkable skill and energy to colorizing Civil War-era photographs. The Daily Mail has some of them, and there are more here and here. The photos all possess a striking immediacy–Mark Twain looks as though he is about to snarl at you–but here are just two.
First, Ulysses Grant, my favorite historical figure. Grant was a kind, often diffident man who didn’t seem to have a talent for anything but horseback riding and warfare, at which he was a genius, until he produced one of the great works of nonfiction in the English language:
And this is Lewis Powell, one of John Wilkes Booth’s co-conspirators. Shown here after his capture at age 20, Powell was a big, tough, mentally marginal Confederate veteran and ardent Democratic Party secessionist whose assignment was to kill Secretary of State William Seward. Somewhat miraculously, he failed. Powell was hanged along with the rest of the conspirators. Today, Powell could be a young thug in any American city:
Much more at the links.