Tag Archives: Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum

“War in the Mountains” symposium

If you’re interested in the Civil War in Appalachia, then allow me to recommend “War in the Mountains,” a symposium scheduled for Saturday, April 16 at the Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum in Harrogate, TN.  Here are the presenters:

For more info, call (423) 869-6439 or send an e-mail to carol.campbell@lmunet.edu.

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The Knoxville News Sentinel

…recently published an article on Lincoln and his connections to East Tennessee, illustrated with some items from the Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum in Harrogate.  Check it out.

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Lincoln lectures are back at LMU

As I’ve mentioned before, the Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum on the campus of Lincoln Memorial University in Harrogate, TN has one of the finest Lincolniana/Civil War collections anywhere.  For decades, this material has been a fabulous resource for both the public and for scholars.

Much of the credit for building this collection belongs to the late Lincoln scholar R. Gerald McMurtry.  After spending a few years with the Lincoln National Life Foundation’s collection (formerly on display at the now-closed Lincoln Museum in Ft. Wayne, IN) and the Lincoln Memorial Highway Commission, McMurtry came to LMU in 1937.  He stayed for nearly two decades—returning to the Lincoln National Life Foundation in 1956—and in that time he oversaw the university’s “golden age” of Lincolnian acquisition and scholarship, collecting many of the university’s most spectacular pieces and writing or editing an impressive list of scholarly publications.

This photo shows a very small part of the collection that McMurtry helped build: a portrait of Mary Todd Lincoln by one of her relatives, Lincoln campaign banners, and a flag Lincoln raised during his 1858 bid to unseat Stephen Douglas.

Until several years ago, LMU’s museum hosted an annual lecture named for Lincoln artist and collector Lloyd Ostendorf.  It was always a great opportunity for students, alumni, and visitors to hear Lincoln and Civil War scholars present their research, and it was sad to see it go.

I’m pleased to report that LMU is once again mounting a Lincoln lecture series, this time under the aegis of the college’s new Abraham Lincoln Institute for the Study of Leadership and Public Policy.  Appropriately, it’s named in honor of R. Gerald McMurtry.

Dan Stowell will present the very first R. Gerald McMurtry Memorial Lecture on Feb. 12 at LMU’s Duncan School of Law in Knoxville.  Dr. Stowell is editor of the Papers of Abraham Lincoln and author of a number of books on Lincoln and nineteenth-century history.  You can get more information about the lectures series and the institute here.

As somebody who got his start in public history at LMU, I’m extremely happy to see the university hosting regular Lincoln lectures again, and equally happy that the school is honoring McMurtry.  I encourage anyone in East Tennessee with an interest in history to attend and help get this series off to a great start.

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Got any plans for April 15-17?

If not, then let me suggest the 2010 Lincoln Symposium at the Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum in Harrogate, TN.  Here’s a list of the scheduled presenters:

I heartily recommend this event to any Lincoln or Civil War aficionados in the southeast.  The ALLM hosts symposia every few years, and they’re always well worth attending.  Last time, I was one of the folks scrambling around behind the scenes, and I still had fun.  This year I’ll just sit back and enjoy the presentations.

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Lincoln bicentennial in East Tennessee

If you want to do something to celebrate the Lincoln bicentennial on Feb. 12 but you can’t make it to Hodgenville, Washington, or Springfield, don’t despair.  If you’ll be within driving distance of the Cumberland Gap area, why not attend the special program at the Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum?  “Let Us Praise Famous Men” is a presentation on Lincoln in films by Dr. Liz Murphy Thomas of the University of Illinois-Springfield.  There will be two showings, one at 10:00 A.M. and one at 4:30 P.M.

While you’re there, you can scope out the museum’s fantastic Lincoln-Civil War collection and see the special exhibit on Lincoln in memory.

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Filed under Abraham Lincoln, Civil War, History and Memory, Museums and Historic Sites

New exhibit examines Lincoln the icon

The folks at the Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum in Harrogate, TN have unveiled their latest exhibit, an exploration of the ways advertisers, filmmakers, politicians, and practically everyone have invoked Lincoln in the decades since his death.  “Lincoln in Memory: The 16th President in Personal and Cultural Recollections” relies heavily on original material from the museum’s vast holdings to illustrate Lincoln’s role as a cultural icon.

I got the chance to see this exhibit when it was under construction, and it was a rather surprising experience.  I worked at the ALLM as a student intern and later as a staff member, so I’m pretty familiar with the collection, but this exhibit includes quite a few items that were new to me.  It’s an impressive assemblage of Lincolniana: movie posters, original pop art, ads, calendars, propaganda, etc.

A brief description of the exhibit is available here at the museum’s website.  I strongly recommend a visit.  The ALLM has one of the finest Lincoln/Civil War collections anywhere, and it’s just a stone’s throw from the beautiful Cumberland Gap National Historical Park.

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Filed under Abraham Lincoln, Civil War, History and Memory, Museums and Historic Sites