By Herb Meeker
News Report Staff
It’s that time again to learn more about Abraham Lincoln and his times with the help of the Effingham County Cultural Center and History Association plus the Lake Land College Effingham Kluthe Center.
The annual event on our sixteenth president will feature a lecture on Lincoln’s health called “Medical Lincoln: The Health of our 16th President,” plus music from the Civil War era and different displays in the History Museum, located on the Courthouse Square in Effingham.
The doors to the museum will open to visitors at 6 p.m. on Thursday, April 26.
You can look over Abraham Lincoln and Civil War history displays in the museum before heading upstairs to the old courtroom. The evening’s program starts at 6:30 p.m. with a performance by the Quintessential Quartet on the second floor. The upper level of the museum is accessible by elevator to the public and admission is free.
Delaine Donaldson and others involved with organizing the Lincoln event know it is a crowd-pleaser.
“This is the fourth year for our Lincoln event. It has been well-attended each year. We have had a lot of favorable comments by offering both music and informative presentations on Lincoln. That helps draw in people each year,” said Donaldson, president of the Cultural Center and History Association that helped save the 145-year-old brick and stone former county courthouse from demolition.
Linda Ruholl, a local medical historian, will offer information at 7 p.m. on Abe Lincoln’s health when he was in the White House. Her talk might offer some surprises on the level of health care during the mid-1800s and also the ailments the tall and lean rail splitter-turned lawyer faced.
Cecilia Anable will draw out her bow to play her violin, or fiddle as Lincoln might have called it, to offer more music of Lincoln’s time. Some of the tunes might have echoed across the prairie at dances and other social events attended by Lincoln when he lived in Illinois.
The night will end with a drawing for the book “A 150th Anniversary Tribute to Gettysburg: A Day-by-Day Account of the Greatest Civil War Battle.” It was written by Jeff Shaara, a talented and prolific writer on American military history and son of Michael Schaara, author of the classic “Killer Angels,” a historic novel on the battle of Gettysburg.
Lake Land College Nursing program will offer the history of the nursing education. Karen Kull, director of the Kluthe Center, said it makes sense for the local community college facility to help out with the annual Lincoln program.
“It’s focusing on history. We teach history so it’s a good fit for Lake Land and the museum to work together on this,” said Kull, who added that Ruholl and Donaldson have both taught at Lake Land.
The Lincoln presentations were started as a way to offer perspectives on the late president’s influence on our history. It has featured local historians and artists each year, making it a unique historical journey for the audience.