By David J. Kent
Monday, November 20, 2023
Three spirits famously visited Ebenezer Scrooge on a cold December eve. The ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Yet to Come scared generosity and compassion into a crotchety old man. On December 5th, we all have the chance to gain some holiday vibes ourselves while hearing about how the spirits and spiritualism imbued the lives of both the Lincolns and the Booths.
All Lincoln Group of DC members are welcome to join us for our annual holiday luncheon at Maggiano's Little Italy restaurant. Our featured speaker is Dr. Terry Alford - Professor Emeritus of History at Northern Virginia Community College, a founding board member of the Abraham Lincoln Institute, and a frequent contributor to historical discussion on a range of television networks. He is a renowned expert on both Abraham Lincoln and John Wilkes Booth. Alford will discuss his latest book, In the Houses of Their Dead: The Lincoln's, the Booths, and the Spirits, which should get us all in the proper (spooky) holiday mood.
The book is a fascinating look at the uncanny connections to spiritualism shared by the Booth and Lincoln families. Alford's book has been referred to "Lincoln in the Bardo - for real" and "a lively study of two wildly disparate families." While Lincoln was usually seen as a rational, empirically minded man, he was also deeply superstitious and often drawn to the irrational. The Booth family shared this tendency. Even more bizarrely, the Booths and the Lincolns even used some of the same mediums, including the infamous Charles Colchester. Alford puts this spiritualism into the context of the times and shows how it affected both families, especially Mary Lincoln after son Willie's death in February 1862.
Remember, this is a luncheon, so the meal will get started at 11:30 am ET upstairs at Maggiano's Little Italy, 5333 Wisconsin Ave NW, Washington, DC 20015. Please register now so we can get a head count, and please also pay in advance to streamline your arrival - go to this link to pay.
This is a luncheon you will not want to miss!
Check out the Event page for more information and to register!