Monday, May 11, 2015

Lincoln Funeral 150th Anniversary

Trip picture time! This was my first time travelling for an event, and my mom's first event ever. While there were some frustrating logistic issues, the other reenactors were delightful; the coordinators for the Ursuline Hill (progressive civilian) section were particularly praiseworthy.  Springfield was very nice, too.  I'm now horribly jealous of the Edwards House (has provenance for a ton of its furniture, and got to reproduce its actual wallpaper in the restoration), am ready to move into Lincoln's neighborhood.

Springfield was a ridiculously lovely little town to visit. The residents were uniformly polite and welcoming, even when beset on all sides by strangely attired visitors. And they really dove into things: not only were the historic houses draped in crepe, but even modern business in downtown, and private houses along the procession got involved.

Sites definitely worth visiting:

The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum. The museum is much more tourist-friendly of the two, and has some very impressive technology going into its theatrical presentations. The most amusing exhibit, in my opinion, was the modern network news treatment of the 1860 Presidential Election—and definitely read the crawl script.

The Lincoln House is gorgeous. Some of the furnishings are original; the front rooms are decorated to match the engravings made of them for Frank Leslie's in 1860 (a reprint of which, incidentally, is available in the gift shop).

Lincoln House in Springfield, April 2015; black bunting for 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln's funeral.
Lincoln House, draped in mourning, April 2015
The neighborhood around the house, for one block in each direction, has been restored to its c. 1860 appearance. Two of the houses are open to visitors, with displays on the rehabilitation project. The surviving buildings all have modern interiors, and restored historic facades (excepting one house which is still in progress) with explanatory placards noting the 1860s residents and their relationship to the Lincolns.
8th Street, Springfield, Lincoln neighborhood.
8th Street, looking north
8th Street, Springfield, Lincoln neighborhood.
8th Street, south of Jackson
The Old State Capitol was also quite lovely; it has a rebuilt interior c. 1860 (originally in use 1839-1876), and guides to walk you through it.
Old State Capitol in Springfield, Ill.
The Old Statehouse in Springfield
Interior of Old State Capitol in Springfield, Ill.
Second floor stairs
Representatives' Chamber, Old Statehouse, Springfield, Ill.
The Representatives' Chamber
Right across the street, stands one of Abraham Lincoln's legal premises (unfortunately not open at present).
Lincoln-Herndown Law Offices in Springfield, Ill.
There's a neat statue of Abe, Mary, and the younger boys just outside
Edwards Place, once of the home of Benjamin Stephenson Edwards (Mary Todd Lincoln's sister Elizabeth was married to Ben's brother Ninian), houses the Springfield Art Association. The ground floor has been restored to its mid nineteenth-century appearance, including reproduced wallpaper (printed from surviving scraps), appropriate china and glassware based on excavated shards, some original furniture, and supplemental period-appropriate pieces from other Springfield homes. There's also a modern gallery attached.
Re-constructed blue transferware pitcher from the Edwards House, Springfield, IL.
Reconstructed pitcher (from shards found in privy)
1840s sofa, Edwards House, Springfield, IL.
1840's (?) sofa and loud carpet
Original and reproduction wallpaper, Edwards House, Springfield, IL.
Original and reproduced wallpaper
Oak Ridge Cemetery, of course, contains the Lincoln family's very impressive tomb. The original entrance and receiving vault were restored for the 150th anniversary exercises.
Historic entrance to Oakridge Cemetery, Springfield, IL.
Restored historic entrance
Lincoln tomb, Oakridge Cemetery, Springfield, IL.
Lincoln Tomb
Sculptures on Lincoln tomb, Oakridge Cemetery, Springfield, IL.
Sculpture Details

Historic receiving vault, Oakridge Cemetery, Springfield, IL.
Restored Receiving Vault
I've few pictures of the Funeral events themselves, on account of my camera being distinctly un-period-correct. There was a very well-attended symposium at U. Illinois-Springfield Thursday evening. On Friday, Mom and I took Nanci Gasiel's class on making mourning badges.

Reproduced Lincoln mourning badge or cockade.
Mourning badge, based on an original
 The class was held in the lovely Brinkerhoff mansion, on the grounds of Benedictine University. The University also which also housed some of the reenactment camping, as well as the civilian-centered sutlers, including Victorian Needle, P. Palmer, and the Dressmaker's Shop. On Saturday afternoon, the proprietresses (and certain other civilians) gave half-hour lectures on their particular topics of interest—we caught all or part of talks on jewelry, straw bonnet manufacture, misconceptions about underwear, laundry, and the different styles/shapes of men's hats.
Brinkerhoff Mansion, Benedictine University, Springfield, Ill.
Brinkerfhoff Mansion
Saturday morning had the short procession, in which the replica coffin was removed from its special rail car, and transported to the Statehouse. The hearse was accompanied by dignitaries in carriages, military columns, and a crowd of citizens. As part of that crowd, I didn't get any pictures.

For the longer procession (Statehouse to Oak Ridge) on Sunday, however, I got some pictures from the sidelines before joining the march.
Replica hearse used in 150th Anniversary Lincoln Funeral Procession.
Reproduced hearse, pulled by 6 horses
Reenactor soldiers marching in 150th Anniversary Lincoln Funeral Procession.
Soldiers marching in the procession
Musicians in 150th Anniversary Lincoln Funeral Procession.
Musicians in the procession

Columns of infantry in 150th Anniversary Lincoln Funeral Procession.
Military units precede the hearse

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