Tag Archives: Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum

Two events for all you folks in East Tennessee

If you live in my neck of the woods, here are a couple of upcoming events you might like.

This Saturday from 2:00 to 6:00 P.M., Marble Springs State Historic Site in Knoxville is holding its annual “Halloween Haunts & Haints” event, with special activities for kids and trick-or-treating at the site’s historic buildings.

Next up is the Lincoln Institute’s 2013 R. Gerald McMurtry Memorial Lecture.  Ron Soodalter will present “The Quality of Mercy: Abraham Lincoln and the Power to Pardon,” at 11:00 A.M. in the Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum.  Soodalter is the author of Hanging Captain Gordon: The Life and Trial of an American Slave Trader, and has worked as an educator, curator, and contributor to numerous national magazines.



Filed under Abraham Lincoln, Museums and Historic Sites, Tennessee History

Admission to LMU’s museum free for active duty personnel this summer

Cross-posted at the blog of the Abraham Lincoln Institute for the Study of Leadership and Public Policy

Lincoln Memorial University’s Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum is one of 2,000 institutions across the country participating in the Blue Star Museums program.  Admission for active duty military personnel (including National Guard and Reserve, U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, and NOAA Commissioned Corps) and up to five family members is free until September 2, 2013.  Just bring your Geneva Convention common access card or Uniformed Services ID Card (1173 or 1173-1) when you visit.

For more information about the museum, call (423) 869-6235 or visit www.lmunet.edu/museum.

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Interested in Appalachia’s Civil War?

Then come to the third War in the Mountains Symposium this April at LMU’s Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum.

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Filed under Appalachian History, Civil War

You’ve got about three weeks

…to see the turret from the Monitor live and in person.  Conservators at the Mariners’ Museum have taken it out of its freshwater tank for cleaning.  Once they’re done, the turret goes back in for another soak, and it’ll be fifteen years before they take it out again.  Those of us who can’t make it to Newport News by the end of the month can still watch on live webcam.

I’ve wanted to get down there for a long time.  I may have told you guys this before, but LMU’s museum has a number of very rare Monitor items in its collection.  Some of them belonged to John Worden, who commanded the ship during the battle with the Virginia, including a collection of his papers, mementos given to him by the crew, the speaking trumpet he used in the engagement, and one of the ship’s signal lanterns. One of my biggest thrills as an intern was getting to handle these items in the process of dismantling a display.  You can see some of this material in the museum’s current temporary exhibit, “Lincoln and the Technology of War.”


Filed under Civil War, Museums and Historic Sites

“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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Filed under Appalachian History, Civil War, Tennessee History

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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Filed under Abraham Lincoln, Appalachian History

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.


Filed under Abraham Lincoln