University of Evansville Libraries to Host Traveling Exhibition on Lincoln, the Constitution, and the Civil War

Posted: Tuesday, February 4, 2014

The University of Evansville has been selected to host the nationally traveling exhibition “Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War,” opening February 6 and running through March 21 in the University Libraries.  

The traveling exhibition is composed of informative panels featuring photographic reproductions of original documents, including a draft of Lincoln’s first inaugural speech, the Emancipation Proclamation, and the Thirteenth Amendment. It will be open during University Libraries hours, which vary throughout the semester and are posted online at Admission is free and open to the public.

“We are delighted to have been selected as a site for this exhibition,” said William Louden, University librarian. “As a new president, Abraham Lincoln was faced with enormous challenges. This exhibition shows how Lincoln struggled with issues of secession, slavery, and civil liberties – all questions our country’s founding charter left unanswered. Most importantly, the exhibit helps visitors understand why Lincoln’s struggle with the Constitution still matters today.”

University Libraries will celebrate the opening of the exhibition at 4 p.m. Thursday, February 6 with a lecture entitled “We Cannot Escape History,” presented by William Bartelt, a local historian and author of There I Grew Up: Remembering Abraham Lincoln’s Indiana Youth. The lecture will explore Lincoln’s actions in fulfilling the promise of America begun by the founders.

To mark the closing of the exhibition, Robin Sager, UE assistant professor of history, will present “Loreta Janeta Velazquez: The Life and Times of a Cross-Dressing Civil War Soldier” at 4 p.m. Wednesday, March 19. This lecture will discuss Loreta Janeta Velazquez’s 1876 work The Woman in Battle: A Narrative of the Exploits, Adventures, and Travels of Madame Loreta Janeta Velazquez. Sager will provide a dramatic recounting of Velazquez’s exploits as a cross-dressing soldier fighting for the Confederacy, including her role in one of the most hotly contested battles of the war.  

The National Constitution Center and the American Library Association Public Programs Office organized the traveling exhibition, which was made possible by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. The traveling exhibition is based on an exhibition of the same name developed by the National Constitution Center.

For more information, please contact University Libraries at 812-488-2487.

Members of the media seeking more information may contact the Office of University Relations at 812-488-2236.

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