Zionsville Historical Society program brings Lincoln to life 


By Heather Lusk

The Zionsville Historical Society is bringing Abraham Lincoln to Zionsville Nov. 15.


Abraham Lincoln Live examines Lincoln’s childhood, the deaths of his mother and sister, his failures in business, his courtship of Mary Todd and Civil War tragedy and triumph. It will be presented by historical interpreter Danny Russel, who is known for portraying Lincoln at schools, including some in Zionsville. The free program is family friendly with no reservations necessary.

“He will speak to our audience as Mr. Lincoln, using Mr. Lincoln’s own words and letters,” said Zionsville Historical Society Vice President Lynne Manning.

“We’re trying to create a feeling of, ‘Here’s what we’re proud of in our (Zionsville) history,’” Manning said. “Also, ‘Here’s what was happening globally, what happened in the world that really affected Zionsville residents.’ Lincoln was important to our community.”

Zionsville was a very small and very new town when Lincoln’s train came through on his way to his inauguration stopping to speak with town residents, and Manning added he was likely the first president they had seen. Although his funeral train didn’t stop, it was of significance the train came through Zionsville.

The Zionsville Historical Society generally hosts two programs each year, with this summer’s presentation on mourning customs being the first. That presentation also utilized historical reenactment, with two women who used props and music to explore the etiquette around death in the Victorian era.

“This is a new direction in programming for us,” Manning said.

Both presentations tied into the 150th anniversary of the end of the Civil War and the assassination of Lincoln.

Abraham Lincoln Live will be from 1 to 3 p.m. Russel’s reenactment is approximately one hour long, with refreshments available and an opportunity to meet Lincoln after the performance. It will be held at the Zionsville Lions Club clubhouse, 115 S. Elm St.


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