Sep 2, 2008

Perpetuating History

Last week marked the 150th Anniversary of the historic Lincoln-Douglas debates. My city was one of the lucky ones that sponsored one of the debates in 1858. Planning for this event has been over a year in the making. Everywhere It was expected that historical buffs from all over the country attended the festivities. The post office was not to be left out, either.

Created was a special cancellation postmark that commemorated the anniversary of these events in history. (Here’s where you’re going to see how much of a “geek” I really am!) Being a stamp collector as a kid, I *had* to get the special cancellation postmark! And yes, I *still* have my stamp collection. And yes, I still save neat-looking stamps as well as stamps from around the world.

Abraham Lincoln has letters stamped
by post office clerk after the unveiling
of the new stamp cancellation.

Via steam train, Lincoln and Douglas arrived to our fair city at the railroad museum on Friday. Following was a torchlight parade and re-enactment of an abolitionist rally. A parade through downtown started off the Saturday. Later in the evening, an 1860 Grand Ball was held featuring 19th century music, complete with attendees in historic dress. Had I known way ahead of time, I would’ve made a dress and went. On Sunday was Family Day and Art in the Park with Lincoln & Douglas.

Weeks before the festivities, you could almost feel the excitement in the air! Business owners were doing major improvements to storefronts, old buildings being torn down, street improvements being made, flowers being planted, homeowners along the major routes into town spruced up their curb appeal, and of course flags and swags of red, white, & blue everywhere!

In addition, there was a feature article in the Smithsonian magazine about my city and history of the debates! How cool is that?!?


Chiloe said...

I'm sure you meant 1855 ???

I still have a lot of my old stamp from all over the world too. I used to have a lot of penpals when I was a teenager.

Kristin said...

Wow...what cool info. I love reading historical blurbs like this.

Kendra said...

We've had a lot of Lincoln-related stuff going on around here this year to mark the 200th anniversary of his birth. He was born down the road a ways in Hodgenville, KY, and spent his boyhood across the river in Spencer Co, IN (that was always a big field trip in elementary Lincoln State Park and the Boyhood Memorial). And in all the Lincoln stuff, another famous Civil War figure is getting some attention - Jefferson Davis. He was born just down the road from where Lincoln was born.

Barbara said...

What an really cool event!!! Hope you enjoyed all the festivities.
Barb in TX