With the bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln’s birth less than a year away, it seems as if everyone is “thinkin‘ Lincoln” these days. Candidates fall over themselves comparing themselves to Lincoln, (see my previous post), new books about Lincoln seem to appear every day, and Steven Spielberg has finally announced his biopic of Lincoln will begin filming in 2009.
This week’s Newsweek magazine has a very informative article concerning many of the special events and projects under way to celebrate Old Abe. For example, the U.S. Mint will offer four different pennies, the reverse of each depicting a different residence of Lincoln. Ford’s Theater will commission and stage a new play about Lincoln’s life. A new exhibit is being put together by the Library of Congress. Up to 17 states will be staging re-enactments of the famous Lincoln-Douglas debates. Philadelphia will be re-creating an 1864 fair that Lincoln attended. Esteemed Lincoln scholar Harold Holzer has not one, but three books coming out. The best site for learning about all the different events is at the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission. The Commission was formed by Congress to organize and plan the celebrations across the country.
In short, it appears that the U.S. will be in the midst of Lincolnmania. Now is the perfect time for all of us to learn more about Abraham Lincoln. Not the myth, but the man himself. Pick up a book, attend a re-enactment, visit a Lincoln site. Learn how this one man, with next to no formal education, became the nation’s greatest president, who resonates in our nation to this day.