WASHINGTON – This year marks the Bicentennial of the birth of Abraham Lincoln. He was born on February 12, 1809 in relative obscurity in central Kentucky. He is arguably the most important President in the history of this nation by virtue of the crisis of disunion that faced him when he took office as the 16th President of the United States on March 4, 1861.
The National Park Service has the honor of preserving and managing several areas that are both directly and indirectly related to the life and Presidency of Abraham Lincoln – places such as the Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Site in Hodgenville, Kentucky, Lincoln Home National Historic Site in Springfield, Illinois, Ford’s Theatre National Historic Site in Washington, D.C, and Mount Rushmore National Monument in South Dakota.
“During this Bicentennial year of the birth of Abraham Lincoln, I invite everyone to visit one of the national park sites that preserves and commemorates the life and achievements of this great President,” said Dan Wenk, acting Director of the National Park Service. “As a nation we celebrate the birth and achievements of this great American because of what he means to the nation, to the world, and to the many individuals that his life has inspired.”
The National Park Service has developed a web site for the public that will help provide a better understanding and appreciation for Abraham Lincoln. Log on to the Celebrate the Bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln’s Birth website at: http://www.nps.gov/pub_aff/lincoln200/index.html, to learn of the many special places managed by the National Park Service that commemorates the life of Abraham Lincoln. In addition to a list of national park sites, the web site includes information and web links to books, photographs and documents related to Abraham Lincoln, as well as a link to the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission.
Many events are planned throughout the nation in 2009 that will provide opportunities to celebrate the Bicentennial of the birth of Abraham Lincoln. A visit to one of the National Park Service sites offers a great opportunity to learn and reflect about a man who served his country as president and gave his “last full measure of devotion” to preserve the United States.