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Camp Butler National Cemetery Then and Now
Tuesday, April 6th, 7 p.m. (CST) Zoom
Join us a Joseph Wheeler, Foreman of Camp Butler discusses with us the its rich history and its current mission. Camp Butler National Cemetery is located in Sangamon County near Riverton, Illinois, and occupies a portion of what was the second-largest military training camp in Illinois during the Civil War.
In 1861, the current training camp, Yates, in the Springfield area, was not going to be sufficient to train the surge of incoming troops after the defeat of Bull Run and the President Lincoln’s call for 500,000 more men. The original camp was on the banks of Clear Lake but with the logistics of troops and supplies it was decided to move the camp closer to the railway. In December 1861, the camp was moved to the current location. This new location, with the railway so close, provided for an easier time to receive troops and supplies. In February 1862, the first prisoners were transported to Camp Butler from the fall of Fort Donelson. Two-thousand Confederate troops were the first prisoners to be held at Camp Butler; this number would grow to over ten-thousand troops by the end of the war. The last confederate troops left in February 1863, leaving 866 buried there.
Register at https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_KKPjf2uzQWmCWHINXTMlfw
The 14th Lincoln Leadership Prize Virtual Event Honoring Gary Sinise
Tuesday, April 13th
Gary Sinise, Founder, President, Chairman, Gary Sinise Foundation, is the 2021 Lincoln Leadership Prize recipient. Sinise’s stage, film and television career has spanned more than four decades. In 1974, at 18 years old, he co-founded Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre Company. 20 years later, for his performance as Lt. Dan Taylor in Forrest Gump, he received nominations for Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild and Academy Awards, and earned the Best Supporting Actor Award from the National Board of Review and the Commander's Award from the Disabled American Veterans. Read more.
Details to follow.
"Four Score Speaker Series" with Dr. David Silkenat
Tuesday, April 20th, 7pm CST (Zoom webinar)
We will be joined by Dr. David Silkenat, Professor at The University of Edinburgh, to discuss his latest book, Raising the White Flag: How Surrender Defined the American Civil War. Dr. Silkenat provides the first comprehensive study of Civil War surrender, focusing on the conflicting social, political, and cultural meanings of the action. Looking at the conflict from the perspective of men who surrendered, Silkenat creates new avenues to understand prisoners of war, fighting by Confederate guerrillas, the role of southern Unionists, and the experiences of African American soldiers. The experience of surrender also sheds valuable light on the culture of honor, the experience of combat, and the laws of war.
Kate Warne, America's First Female Private Detective
Wednesday, May 5th, 7pm CST (Zoom webinar)
In 1850, Allan Pinkerton developed an organization that eventually became the renowned Pinkerton National Detective Agency. The company logo featured an open eye and the motto “We Never Sleep.” With the promise of persistence in the face of danger, Pinkerton agents secured wealthy business clients such as the railroads and banks as their reputation for honesty and success grew.
Pinkerton was known for innovations in the field of detection. His advertisement in the Chicago newspapers drew interest from a widow with a background in drama. Kate Warne, America’s first female private detective, joined the Pinkerton Agency in 1856 and used her acting talent to secure information from dangerous criminals. She was exceptionally talented at insinuating herself into the social circle of suspects.
Warne’s skill was put to the test throughout the Civil War era. This plucky woman was part of the team that discovered a plot by Southerners who were determined to assassinate Lincoln before he could be inaugurated. Join us, as Kate Warne describes the steps taken by the Pinkerton agents to foil the Baltimore Plot and safely smuggled President-elect Abraham Lincoln into Washington, DC.
Four Score Speaker Series with Jon White
Wednesday, May 12th, 7 p.m. (CST) Zoom
We are thrilled to have Jon White join us to discuss his career writing about Lincoln and the Civil War. Jonathan W. White is associate professor of American Studies at Christopher Newport University, where he has taught since 2009. He is the author or editor of twelve books, including Abraham Lincoln and Treason in the Civil War: The Trials of John Merryman (2011), and Emancipation, the Union Army, and the Reelection of Abraham Lincoln (2014), which was a finalist for both the Lincoln Prize and Jefferson Davis Prize, a “best book” in Civil War Monitor, and the winner of the Abraham Lincoln Institute’s 2015 book prize. He has published more than 100 articles, essays and reviews, and is the winner of the 2005 John T. Hubbell Prize for the best article in Civil War History, the 2010 Hay-Nicolay Dissertation Prize, and the 2012 Thomas Jefferson Prize for his Guide to Research in Federal Judicial History (2010). He serves as vice chair of The Lincoln Forum, and on the boards of the Abraham Lincoln Association, the Abraham Lincoln Institute, and the John L. Nau III Center for Civil War History at the University of Virginia.
Register at https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN__oME4YKfQIiUIL2PpxHwPw
A 'No-holds Barred' Interview With President/General Ulysses S Grant
Wednesday, September 22nd, 7pm CST (Zoom webinar)
Fellow Illinoisan, Ulysses S Grant, is one of the least understood of our American heroes. He is regarded highly by some and scorned by others. This is not unusual for him as even his good friend, General Sherman, said that Grant was an enigma even to himself.
Our program will be an interview with Grant himself, played by Larry Werline, with no question off-limits. Grant was known for his honesty so there could be some interesting answers to some of his most controversial topics.
Civil War Dress From the Inside-Out
Tuesday, October 12th, 7 p.m. (CST) Zoom
Just how many layers did 1860s women wear to achieve that bell-shaped silhouette? Join Illinois State Museum’s Curator of History Erika Holst to find out! Drawing upon examples of 1860s clothing from the ISM's collections, Holst will walk you through the many layers of women's dress, from chemise to shawl, and discuss the significance of each garment. A question and answer period will follow.
Register at https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_7lP4WA7gRlCt3f_XNFtxrA