Monday, February 27, 2006

Fun Trip: Springfield, IL, Lincoln Museum

I thought I knew a lot about Lincoln, especially since just having read Doris Kearns Goodwin's new book 'Team of Rivals' A weekend trip to Springfield made me realize that there is a lot more history than I knew. The new Lincoln Museum in Springfield is wonderful, and as you move from Lincoln's early days, to his election, to the Civil War, to the White House and finally to his assasination and funeral, you realize that you don't know everything there is to know.

I especially enjoyed the show 'Through Lincoln's Eyes', the hall of gossip (apparently Mr. Lincoln liked to swear, and most of Washington society disdained Mrs. Lincoln), and the various artifacts. I truly liked being able to touch the brass Lincoln life mask. Most men who have become President age dramatically within their term of office, but the changes in Lincoln's visage were stunning. The information on the Civil War was outstanding as well. It is difficult to believe that over 600,000 American souls were lost in that horrific war. I highly recommend it. It's about a 2 1/2 -3 hour trip directly south on the Interstate, and there are good hotels and restaurants in town. (I like Muldaner's, which is about 2 blocks from the museum). It's worth the visit!