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Colby-Sawyer College to Host National Exhibition on Abraham Lincoln's Life and Legacy

NEW LONDON, N.H., Nov. 9, 2010 – Two centuries after Abraham Lincoln's birth in 1809, he is one of the most revered figures in our nation's history. Lincoln's life, accomplishments and legacy are the subject of a new traveling panel exhibition on display at Colby-Sawyer College.

“Abraham Lincoln: A Man of His Time, a Man for All Times” explores how Lincoln transcended his age and left a constitutional legacy for all Americans. The exhibition, created by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History and funded through a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, will be on display from Monday, Nov. 22, through Thursday, Dec. 16, 2010.

The exhibition tells the story of how Lincoln, a self-educated, rough-hewn lawyer with virtually no administrative experience, guided a divided nation through the crises of slavery, secession and Civil War. The exhibition makes extensive use of Lincoln's own words to encourage a deeper understanding of his principles and his legacy. Drawing on documents, broadsides and ephemera from the Gilder Lehrman Collection, the six panels examine the legacy of slavery and emancipation, and Lincoln's commitment to every American's “right to rise.”

The exhibition will travel with a 25-minute film produced by the History Channel, "Decoding Lincoln's Legacy," that offers a fresh perspective on the 16th president just before and during the Civil War. Four renowned historians take viewers on a fascinating journey, exploring how Lincoln's moving words and brilliant strategies were pivotal in steering the nation during its darkest days.

“We are pleased to have been selected as a site for this exhibition,” says Colby-Sawyer College Librarian Carrie Thomas. “Lincoln's achievements as president are well known, but knowledge about our most famous president is dominated by a set of iconic images. Through reproductions of documents, photographs and posters, the exhibition invites visitors to learn about the challenges Lincoln faced and his accomplishments.”

The Susan Colgate Cleveland Library/Learning Center is one of 40 sites nationwide selected to host the Lincoln exhibition. The Gilder Lehrman Institute developed the exhibition to mark the 2009 bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln's birth. The exhibition was curated by Steven Mintz, professor of History at the University of Houston, and Richard Carwardine, Rhodes Professor of American History at Oxford University.

The National Endowment for the Humanities

Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) supports learning in history, literature, philosophy and other areas of the humanities. NEH grants enrich classroom learning, create and preserve knowledge, and bring ideas to life through public television, radio, new technologies, museum exhibitions and programs in libraries and other community places.

Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at The Susan Colgate Cleveland Library/Learning Center is sponsoring free programs and other events for the public in connection with the exhibition. Call (603) 526-3685 for more information.

The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History

Founded in 1994, the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History promotes the study and love of American history. The institute serves teachers, students, scholars and the general public. It helps create history-centered schools, organizes seminars and programs for educators, produces print and electronic publications and traveling exhibitions, sponsors lectures by eminent historians and administers a History Teacher of the Year Award in every state through its partnership with Preserve America.

The institute also conducts awards including the Lincoln, Frederick Douglass and George Washington Book Prizes and offers fellowships for scholars to work in the Gilder Lehrman Collection. The institute maintains two web sites, and the quarterly online journal

Colby-Sawyer College is a comprehensive college that integrates the liberal arts and sciences with professional preparation. Founded in 1837, Colby-Sawyer is located in the scenic Lake Sunapee Region of central New Hampshire. Learn more about the college's vibrant teaching and learning community at

Colby-Sawyer College, 541 Main Street, New London, N.H. 03257 (603) 526-3000