Current Exhibits

nation in tearsA Nation in Tears:
150 Years after Lincoln's Death

12 February — 4 May 2015

The sesquicentennial of Abraham Lincoln's assassination and funeral is commemorated by this exhibition. Items include a copy of the initial printing of Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address on March 4, 1865; an uncut copy of the New York Herald of April 15, the first paper to report the President's assassination; an oversize lithograph of Lincoln on his deathbed surrounded by numerous dignitaries; and issues of the National Police Gazette which featured vignettes of John Wilkes Booth, the assassin, and his co-conspirators.

”A Nation in Tears” will also include plaster casts of the President's hands and a piece of the blood-stained pillow slip on which Lincoln's head was laid. In addition, the exhibition will display photographs of ceremonies in cities along the route of the funeral train from Washington, D.C., to Springfield, Illinois, as well as sermons, hymns, and artifacts which document the nation's mourning.

The exhibition will open at 3:00 p.m. on February 11 at a meeting of the No. 44 Society, the book collecting club of Champaign-Urbana, in the Rare Book & Manuscript Library (346 Library, 1408 W. Gregory Dr., Urbana). The meeting is open to the public.

Items in the exhibition are mainly drawn from the Library's Illinois History and Lincoln Collections.

On May 1, at 3:00 p.m. Richard E. Hart, past president of the Abraham Lincoln Association, will close the exhibition with a description of the final ceremonies in Springfield: "'Bear Him Gently to His Rest': The Funeral of Abraham Lincoln." The public is invited to this special event which will also take place in The Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

A copy of the exhibition handout is available for download at: http://hdl.handle.net/2142/73170