Yes, Abraham Lincoln lived in color, not B&W — but his own words describe his complexion as dark, and his eyes as gray — not blue.
That’s one criticism circulating online about Time Magazine’s colorization of famous photos of the famed President, as well as such shots as the famed WWII victory kiss on the streets of NYC, and the poor during the Depression. The other criticism is that many subjects — such as the Depression — are more suited to gray than Day-Glo color. And, of course, that the photographers behind the shots composed them for black and white, and added color, while perhaps more “true,” betrays the artist’s intent.
However, Time says “Technology has given us an incredibly wide-ranging view of modern presidents…The photo archive of Abraham Lincoln is a much smaller set due to the technological limitations of the time; most of the existing photographs of the 16th president are posed portraits, the majority of which only show Lincoln from the chest up—and all are black-and-white. But TIME commissioned Sanna Dullaway to create a more vibrant document of Lincoln through a series of colorized photographs produced in Photoshop. After removing spots, dust and scratches from archival Lincoln photographs, Dullaway digitally colorizes the files to produce realistic and modern versions of the portraits, which look like they could have been made today.”