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Lincoln Presidential Library honors veterans

The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum will honor the nation’s military by displaying portraits of fallen soldiers, holding special ceremonies and offering free admission on Veterans Day for military personnel, both active and retired.

image002The special events begin Nov. 10, when sketches of Illinois military personnel who have been killed since the 9/11 terrorist attacks will start running continuously on a screen in the museum’s main plaza. The “Portrait of a Soldier” display runs through Nov. 14.

At the same time, another screen will display quotes from Abraham Lincoln about the sacrifices of the military. “Honor to the Soldier, and Sailor everywhere, who bravely bears his country’s cause,” was one of Lincoln’s many comments about the nation’s troops.

Artist Cameron Schilling of Mattoon began producing drawings for his “Portrait of a Soldier” project in 2004. For more about his work, visit

On Nov. 11, Veterans Day, the museum will offer free admission to current and past military personnel, as well as to Gold Star families – those who have lost a member in combat. They will also receive a discount on membership in the ALPLM foundation and on purchases at the museum store.

In addition, a wreath honoring military personnel will be placed in the museum plaza at 11 a.m.

The special events don’t end there.

Nov. 19 is the anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, which was delivered during the dedication of a military cemetery. So from Veterans Day through Nov. 19, the ALPLM will let people place the names of loved ones in the military on white bags. The bags will then be used as luminarias in a ceremony on the 19th.

Sixteen luminarias representing the 16 Illinois soldiers killed at Gettysburg will be placed around a memorial outside the museum 4-6:30 p.m. The luminarias bearing the names of loved ones will be placed there, too.

The ALPLM encourages people to stop by and dedicate a luminaria. Paid museum admission is not required.

Also on Nov. 19:

·         James Cornelius and Carla Knorowski will sign copies of the books “Gettysburg Replies” and “Under Lincoln’s Hat” from noon to 2 p.m.

·         Michael Burlingame and Robert Shaw will sign copies of their coffee table book “Gettysburg.”

·         The 1st Illinois Regimental Cavalry Band will perform at 1 p.m.

·         Noted Lincoln interpreter Fritz Klein’s recitation of the Gettysburg Address will play throughout the day.

The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, a division of the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, is dedicated to telling the story of America’s 16th president through old-fashioned scholarship and modern technology.

The library holds an unparalleled collection of Lincoln books, documents, photographs, artifacts and art, as well as some 12 million items pertaining to all aspects of Illinois history. The museum uses traditional exhibits, eye-catching special effects and innovative story-telling techniques to educate visitors.