Presidents of the United States Wax Figures

Visiting the Presidents – America’s Founding Fathers

The Founding Presidents of the United States of America….In Wax

I recently visited Madame Tussauds wax museum in Washington, DC. I got the chance to scratch off another bucket list item. I love history, and I especially love the presidents.  An early recollection from childhood was looking through a set of my mother’s encyclopedias and seeing huge beautiful colorful portraits of the presidents wondering just who these men were. So the quest to learn about them began. I even started collecting presidents memorabilia during childhood.

I was excited about visiting the wax museum as it was the closest thing I would ever get to meeting the presidents.  Below are some of my thoughts and photos of that visit.

George Washington – 1st President, United States

I loved seeing the old George. The only problem is that he looks like he just woke up. This face really didn’t look like Washington, in my opinion. There is something amiss about his face, but I liked the attire.George Washinton full dress uniformGeorge Washington side profile

John Adams – 2nd President, United States

John Adams looked very lifelike, especially the eyes. I think the artists did an excellent job making this figure look like John Adams.

John Adams sitting in a chair

John Adams

John Adams side profileI’m sorry, but I cannot help but think of a mop when I see the back of Mr. Adams head. He’s got quite a “do” going on there.

John Adams back of head

Thomas Jefferson – 3rd President, United States

The wax figure of Jefferson appears to be an accurate representation of him, at least from his paintings and life mask. Like Adams,  he seems to be having a  bad hair day. The body of this wax figure was used in a scene for my graphic novel, shown in my blog post Playing with James Madison – The Making of a Character. More of the character of TJ can be found at my blog post, Playing with Thomas Jefferson – The Battle between Thomas Jefferson and James Madison

Thomas Jefferson standing Thomas Jefferson Thomas Jefferson side profile

James Madison – 4th President, United States

The great little Madison is my 2nd favorite president. He’s the same height as I and the same weight I once was, 5″4 – 110 lbs. The wax representation below of Madison is very lifelike, but I’m not sure it’s an accurate representation of what he looked like based on his life mask. See my post Playing with James Madison – The Making of a Character for what I believe is a more accurate representation of Madison. However, the nose appears to be accurate as well as the face shape on the wax figure. I think they missed the mark on the eyes.

James Madison James Madison looking slighly to his left James Madison James Madison side profile James Madison standing side profile

James Monroe – 5th President, United States

This James at 6′ in height dwarfs the previous James. I love James Monroe’s suit here. Based on James’ death mask, this may be a good representation of him. Either way, this figure is right handsome.

President James Monroe President James Monroe President James Monroe side profile

Visiting the Presidents, Part II – John Quincy Adams to Tyler too

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Life Mask Photoshop Reconstructions
Before photography, life masks gave us the perfect likeness of people. Plaster was applied to the head and sometimes upper torso to create a mold to cast the life mask of a person. Using life masks, I was able to complete a forensic/academic study of how the subjects most likely appeared using Adobe Photoshop to add flesh, hair, and other details.
Intimate History Tours
Intimate History Tours sprang from an Adobe Photoshop graphic novel I created using James Madison as a fictional character. The graphic novel became too long and challenging, so I decided to focus on shorter blog posts with different personages from history. I visit a historical location and then “Photoshop” a virtual tour in which you and I get to meet folks from history.
The Madison Project
It all started with a graphic novel aimed at a Star Trek, Star Wars fan base who may not otherwise consider historical fiction. One could read this novel and get a historically accurate account of James Madison intertwined with a good science fiction story. The Madison project is a series of blog posts featuring select images from that effort as well as a Second Amendment meme centered around Madison.
What started as a fictional graphic novel has led me to an in-depth study and curiosity to know everything about him, including what he looked like. Anyway, doing all this research on Madison and making at least two trips to Montpelier, I feel as if I’ve gotten to know the little fellow and Dolley too!

It’s been fun.

Classic Cars
All things “Old Cars.”
Blast From the Past
Blast from the past is a series of posts about tidbits from the past that I find interesting. Anything could show up here!

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