33 photos of historical figures when they were young

Last updated on April 10th, 2024 at 03:51 am

History buffs and photography enthusiasts will enjoy these rare vintage photos of historical figures.

Many are often portrayed as stoic, severe adults, but these photos show them as young people full of life and potential.

From Abraham Lincoln to Amelia Earhart, these pictures offer a unique glimpse into the lives of some of the most influential people in history. So sit back and enjoy these fascinating photos!

16-year-old Walt Disney, c. 1917.

Richard Nixon at the age of 17, c. 1930

A 15-year-old Teddy Roosevelt sporting some already impressive chops.

A young Joseph Stalin in his early 20s, 1902.

Vincent van Gogh at the age of 19, 1873.

Bill Clinton shakes hands with John F. Kennedy, 1963.

24-year-old Mark Twain,

7-year-old Martin Luther King, Jr.

Early photo of a young Abraham Lincoln, c. 1840.

Sir Winston Churchill in a military uniform at 21 years old, 1895. The photo was hand-tinted.

10-year-old JFK

Fidel Castro reading at his mountain base, 1957.

Teenage Sigmund Freud with mother, 1872.

John McCain in his late 20s, 1965.
23-year-old Nikola Tesla, 1879

22-year-old FDR

Ernest Hemingway at 18 or 19, c. 1918.

Frederick Douglass between the age of 28 and 32.

Bill Clinton at 6 years old, 1952.

15-year-old Harry S. Truman, 1899.

A 29-year-old Ronald Reagan posing for an art class in 1940.

George W. Bush and George H.W. Bush in 1947.

Dwight Eisenhower at the age of 21-22 in 1912.

Benito Mussolini’s mugshot, 1903.

Vladimir Lenin at 17, 1887.

30-year-old Thomas Edison, c. 1878.

Mao Zedong, 1927

19-year-old Nelson Mandela, 1937.

19-year-old Mahatma Gandhi

Young Vladimir Lenin (left) when he was 3.

Future pioneer of flight Amelia Earhart when she was 4, 1901.

Albert Einstein, 1882.

22-year-old Hillary Rodham Clinton, 1969.

Mother Theresa at the age of 18.

Saddam Hussein, 1963.

Stephen Hawking, 1965.

Pope Francis

Pablo Picasso, 1908.

Maya Angelou, 1957.

Gerald Ford, 1933.

Marie Curie, 1886.

Herbert Hoover, 1898.

Susan B. Anthony, c. 1848-1849.

Muammar Gaddafi

Kim Jong-un

Osama Bin Laden

Che Guevara, c. 1934

Kim Jong-il

Francisco Franco

Seeing these photos of historical figures as young people can give us a new perspective on their lives and how they came to be who they are. It is amazing to see the similarities and differences between these famous people when they were just starting out on their journeys.

What do you think? Were any of your favorite historical figures in this gallery?

If you enjoyed this post, take a look at some of our other photo collections:

Photos of the construction of the Empire State Building

50 must-see photos from history

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