Presidential Library and Museum offers music, drama, education to mark 150th
anniversary of Gettysburg Address
– The memories of a girl who witnessed the Battle of Gettysburg. The Gettysburg
Address set to music. The inspiring words of great leaders. A beautiful
documentary. The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum offers all of
that and more in November to mark the 150th anniversary of the
library and museum’s Union Theater presents free entertainment and educational
events Nov. 18, 20 and 24 as part of a week of special anniversary activities.
For details, please visit www.GettysburgAddress150.com.
To make reservations, visit www.presidentlincoln.illinois.gov
and click on “special event tickets.”
Nov. 18, brings a mix of music and dramatic readings. The memories of a
15-year-old girl who witnessed the battle and tended the wounded will be
brought to life by actress Nancy Diefenback reading from “At Gettysburg, or
What a Girl Saw and Heard of the Battlefield.”
will be followed by readings from “Team of Rivals,” Doris Kearns Goodwin’s
prize-winning history of the Lincoln presidency.
presentation concludes with a special musical performance of the address. Ten
voices will combine to present a version of the speech set to stirring music.
The piece was composed by University of Pennsylvania music director Bruce
Montgomery in 1963 for the 100th anniversary of the speech.
readings and music will be performed at 8 and 10 p.m., part of an evening vigil
leading up to midnight and the arrival of the actual anniversary.
Wednesday, Nov. 20, Union Theater hosts a special roundtable of historians
discussing the address and its legacy, followed by a dramatic presentation
based on speeches inspired by the Gettysburg Address.
roundtable includes James Cornelius, curator of the presidential library’s
Lincoln Collection; Martin Johnson, author of “Writing the Gettysburg Address”;
Holly Kent, a history professor at the University of Illinois at Springfield;
and Daniel Stowell, director of the Papers of Abraham Lincoln. They’ll explore
the meaning and legacy of the address.
of that legacy is the way Lincoln’s speech inspired others. After the
roundtable, a special presentation will dramatize that inspiration as actors
read portions of other speeches delivered at Gettysburg. They’ll present the
words of Woodrow Wilson, Lyndon Johnson, Dwight Eisenhower, Tom Brokaw and
on Sunday, Nov. 24, Union Theater will screen the documentary “The Gettysburg
Story,” a gorgeous look at the battlefield, the address and their place in
history. Filmmaker Jake Boritt will be on hand to answer questions from the
movie runs at 3 p.m. Reservations for the free event can be made at http://tinyurl.com/BorittMovie.