2020 marks the 155th anniversaries of the Civil War’s end, Lincoln’s famed Second Inaugural Address and his tragic assassination. It also marks the 15th anniversary of the opening of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, as well as the 20th anniversary of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation. It seems like only yesterday, a group of concerned, forward thinking individuals recognized the need for a library and museum dedicated our 16th President.
Libraries and museums of modern-day U.S. Presidents are part of the National Archives and Records Administrations system of presidential libraries. In 1955, the U.S. Congress passed the Presidential Libraries Act which created a system of privately erected and federally maintained libraries. While the Act creates presidential sites for all presidents from Herbert Hoover forward, it also means U.S. presidents prior to Hoover were not guaranteed an official presidential library or museum. Presidents like Washington and Lincoln, who historians typically rank as two of the Top 3 presidents to have served the office—with Lincoln often ranked first—were left without the promise of a presidential library.
In 2000, in anticipation of the 200th anniversary of Lincoln’s birth (2009), it was decided to build a presidential library and museum dedicated to the Land of Lincoln’s favorite son. A Foundation was established and fundraising began which included federal and state funding, as well as that from private individuals, corporations and foundations. Because of the collaborative work of public and private institutions and individuals just like you, a state-of-the-art library and museum opened in 2005. Since that time, more than 4 million people from all 50 states, more than 100 countries on seven continents have visited the 16th President’s presidential site and have learned about and celebrated the rail-splitter-turned-president.
Today, just like the good work the National Archives carries out on behalf of the U.S. presidents it represents and presidential libraries it oversees, the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum ensures the preservation and proper curation of Abraham Lincoln’s presidential papers and personal effects making them available to the American people including students, scholars and armchair historians.
As we commemorate the life and times of Abraham Lincoln, we invite you to make a special anniversary donation to assist us in continuing our vital work. In challenging economic times, it is important that nonprofits have the support of their most ardent followers like you. Please take a moment right now and make your generous, tax-deductible gift in support of our work and in behalf of Abraham Lincoln.
The boards and staffs of the Library and Museum, as well as Foundation, encourage you to visit during this special anniversary year and thank you again for your support of Mr. Lincoln’s 21st century “home.”
Ray McCaskey, Board Chair
Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation
P.S. Your generous gift is tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law.
Click here to provide annual support.