06/03/2015 02:22 pm ET Updated Jun 10, 2015

10 Previously Unpublished Photos Of The REAL Colonel Sanders

KFC's Colonel Sanders has been resurrected in comedic new ads fronted by "Saturday Night Live" funnyman Darrell Hammond. It's a fresh PR move for a fast-food chain that began as a small cafe in 1930, and comes on the heels of McDonald's new Hamburglar ad campaign.

KFC unveiled the new Sanders as a grinning, overly patriotic caricature who shares some obvious personality traits with George W. Bush.

But there was a real Colonel Sanders, a stylish businessman who owned more than 200 custom canes and really did wear that iconic white suit everywhere he went for the last few decades of his life.

"There’s no way to replace Colonel Sanders, so we wanted to bring back his entrepreneurial spirit," Kevin Hochman, CMO of KFC U.S., told The Huffington Post. "He was feisty, original but still pragmatic and would call things as he saw them. In the tapes, video and writings we saw a real sense of humor."

Hochman said there's a "treasure trove" of Sanders memorabilia in an underground facility in Louisville, Kentucky, and shared some old photos of the real Sanders exclusively with The Huffington Post. They prove that Hammond really nails the look in the new commercials.

Unpublished Colonel Sanders Photos

BONUS: Here's footage of Sanders when he made an appearance on the TV game show "What's My Line?" in 1963. In it, a panel tries to guess what Sanders does for a living, and Sanders belts out that his chicken is "finger lickin' good!"