By David J. Kent
Tuesday, November 29, 2022
The Lincoln Group of DC has had a very good year. We put on a grand spectacle on the National Mall, collaborated with a wide range of organizations, and held a variety of programs for our members. To top it off – the Lincoln Group of DC won a prestigious award!
We started the year presenting a four-part course on the life of Abraham Lincoln originally developed for Encore Learning. We reprised the program in October as part of our community outreach. We continued our monthly Zoom presentations featuring such luminaries as CNN anchor John Avlon, Archer Alexander researcher Dorris Keeven-Franke, and Lincoln Memorial authors Kevin Schindler and Brian Anderson. Ed Steers gave us some insights into the founding of the Lincoln Group. Our very special Lincoln Birthday joint meeting with the CWRTDC gave us two for the price of one - a moderated discussion between scholars Allen Guelzo and Michael Burlingame. We also began what will be a continuing series of periodic “debate forums,” where we discuss such topics as "Was Lincoln Liberal or Conservative?"
We also returned to in-person dinner meetings at Maggiano’s! In June we welcomed Lincoln statue photographer David Wiegers and Scott Schroeder, his collaborator on a magnificent Google Maps-based statue-finder program. Our September dinner featured LGDC President David J. Kent for his official Lincoln: The Fire of Genius book launch (now available on C-SPAN). In December we’ll offer our annual holiday luncheon at Maggiano’s with a special art and material culture presentation by Michael Fowler. We also had special live events at Gawler’s, an important presidential funeral establishment with connections to Lincoln; and the dedication of beautiful new statuary of Lincoln and Frederick Douglass at the Mathew Brady memorial in Congressional Cemetery.
One of our highlights of the year was organizing a spectacular celebration for the Lincoln Memorial Centennial (see above photo). The main program brought together a range of speakers, historians, singers, and musicians for the iconic building’s 100th anniversary. The two-hour program was covered in the media and recorded by C-SPAN (available here if you haven’t seen it). But the main event was only the beginning. We collaborated with the American Film Institute to present an iconic film featuring the Lincoln Memorial (earlier in the year LGDC and AFI presented the Lincoln Cycle). We supported the Arts Club of DC’s program with Harold Holzer about Daniel Chester French. Past-President John O’Brien gave his famous Lincoln in Washington walking tour. Debbie Jackson worked with the CWRTDC and producers from Ford’s Theatre to do a reading of Bryce O. Stenzel’s “Freedom Temple.” And there was much more.
As we approach the end of 2022, we also received a huge recognition for the many decades of contributions to Lincoln education. The Lincoln Forum presented the Lincoln Group of DC with the prestigious Wendy Allen Award! The award goes to an “organization that has achieved widespread recognition for bringing learning, scholarship, and enlightenment to a wide public.” That certainly describes the Lincoln Group of DC and we are thrilled to have garnered such recognition.
And all this is thanks to the active participation and financial support of our membership. The generosity of our members helped cover the significant expenses of putting on the Lincoln Memorial Centennial and all of our other programs. We are continuing our relationship with Ford's Theatre and its teacher education program through our John T. Elliff Scholarship Fund with generous member support. As the Group’s president, I want to thank all of you who have donated and encourage you to continue to do so (especially now, when you can take advantage of the charitable tax deductions before the year comes to a close).
We already have a long list of programs being lined up for 2023, which happens to be the 160th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation and the Gettysburg Address, as well as the 60th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech, which he gave on the 100th anniversary of Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation (more on our plans soon).
On this Giving Tuesday, and anytime through the end of 2022, please help us continue to provide important programs for our members and the community.
If you would prefer to mail a check, please send it to:
The Lincoln Group of DC P.O. Box 5676 Washington, DC 20016
We’re looking forward to an eventful 2023. Please join us!
P.S. It’s also time to renew your membership if you haven’t signed up for auto-renewed on our website. Please choose your applicable membership category here to pay online, or send a check to the Lincoln Group of DC, P.O. Box 5676, Washington, DC, 20016.
Watch this website and our quarterly newsletter for upcoming events as our 2023 promises to also be a very good year. Thank you!
(Photo credit: Bruce Guthrie)