Abraham Lincoln Association

Abraham Lincoln Association

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The Abraham Lincoln Association is an American association that observes each anniversary of the birth of U.S. President Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln was the 16th President of the United States, serving from March 1861 until his assassination in April 1865. He successfully led his country through a great constitutional, military and moral crisis – the American Civil War – preserving the Union, while ending slavery, and...

, preserves and makes more accessible the landmarks associated with his life, and actively encourages, promotes, and aids the collection and dissemination of authentic information regarding all phases of his life and career.

The Abraham Lincoln Association was organized in 1908 as the Lincoln Centennial Association. Among the founders of the Association were United States Supreme Court Chief Justice Melville Weston Fuller, and financier John Whitfield Bunn. It led the national celebration of Lincoln's one-hundredth birthday. In 1925, under the leadership of Association President Logan Hay, Paul M. Angle became the Association's first executive secretary. Paul Angle, Benjamin Thomas
Benjamin Thomas
Benjamin Thomas may refer to:* Benjamin Thomas , Massachusetts Congressman * Benjamin Thomas , American businessman and industrialist, founder of the Coca-Cola Bottling Company...

, Harry Pratt established the association's programs of research and publication.


Its biannual Journal of the Abraham Lincoln Association is the only journal devoted exclusively to the history and legacies of Abraham Lincoln. The association also publishes a quarterly newsletter, For the People. Historian David Herbert Donald
David Herbert Donald
- Career :Majoring in history and sociology, Donald earned his bachelor degree from Millsaps College in Jackson, Mississippi. He earned his PhD in 1946 under the eminent, leading Lincoln scholar, James G. Randall at the University of Illinois...

 said “The Journal of the Abraham Lincoln Association is the most important periodical in the field of Lincoln studies. As a Lincoln biographer, I rely on it heavily for both ideas and information." The eight volume The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln is now available online to the public at the association's website. The association has made many their publications available to the public on this website.

Lincoln bicentennial events

On February 12, 2009, the Abraham Lincoln Association led the national celebration of Lincoln's 200th birthday. President Barack Obama
Barack Obama
Barack Hussein Obama II is the 44th and current President of the United States. He is the first African American to hold the office. Obama previously served as a United States Senator from Illinois, from January 2005 until he resigned following his victory in the 2008 presidential election.Born in...

 was the guest of honor at the Association's birthday banquet on the evening of February 12 in Springfield. He gave a speech titled “What the People Need Done”. Lincoln scholar Michael Burlingame also spoke at the banquet. The banquet was co-hosted by the Illinois Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission. The association also hosted a roundtable discussion earlier that day about the “Age of Lincoln”. Five Lincoln scholars took part in the event: Orville Vernon Burton
Orville Vernon Burton
Orville Vernon Burton is a professor of history at Clemson University and Director of the Clemson CyberInstitute. He was formerly Director of the Institute for Computing in Humanities, Arts, and Social Science and professor of History and Sociology at the University of Illinois He is also a...

, David R. Contosta, Daniel Walker Howe
Daniel Walker Howe
Daniel Walker Howe is a historian of the early national period of American history and specializes in the intellectual and religious history of the United States. He is Rhodes Professor of American History Emeritus at Oxford University in England and Professor of History Emeritus at the University...

, Russell McClintock and Elizabeth R. Varon.

Annual banquet and symposium

The association celebrates the anniversary of Lincoln’s birth every year in Springfield, Illinois. The banquet and symposium take place on February 12. Past banquet speakers include:

February 12, 2009 President Barack Obama

February 12, 2008 Michael Beschloss
Michael Beschloss
Michael Richard Beschloss is an American historian. A specialist in the United States presidency, he is the author of nine books.- Early life :...

, author

February 12, 2007 Jon Meacham
Jon Meacham
Jon Meacham is executive editor and executive vice president at Random House. A former editor of Newsweek and a Pulitzer Prize winning bestselling author and a commentator on politics, history, and religious faith in America, he is a contributing editor to Time magazine and editor-at-large of WNET...

, author, editor of Newsweek

February 12, 2006 Doris Kearns Goodwin
Doris Kearns Goodwin
Doris Kearns Goodwin is a Pulitzer Prize-winning American biographer and historian, and an oft-seen political commentator. She is the author of biographies of several U.S...

, author
The symposium features speakers on a specific topic regarding Lincoln. Past symposium topics include:

2009: The Age of Lincoln

2008: Celebrating a Century of Lincoln Scholarship

2007: Lincoln and the Politics of the 1850s

2006: The Lincoln Family