Beginning February 12, the story of the country’s darkest days is on exhibit at the Oklahoma City National Memorial. In an amazing and largely unknown drama, Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War, a special exhibition on loan from the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, takes visitors along a tense, exciting reconstruction of just how Lincoln succeeded in saving the nation.
The 2,500- square-foot exhibition highlights the three constitutional crises which Lincoln faced as President: Secession, Slavery and Civil Liberties during the Civil War. The exhibition explores how one individual, who was deeply committed to the belief that citizens can make a real difference, exercised leadership at a pivotal time of crisis for the nation, the Constitution, and the course of freedom worldwide. From families to Civil War buffs and history scholars, this engaging exhibit presents the story of Lincoln and the Constitution in a fresh and compelling way.
Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War features more than 100 images, historical documents and artifacts incorporated into a variety of innovative and interactive exhibit formats. Visitors can stand alongside Lincoln as he is sworn in as President, view Civil War military conflicts and Lincoln portraits through a replicated 1860s box camera, play a replica 1862 board game called “The Secession Game”, use clues to solve an electronic jigsaw puzzle, experience a replicated jail cell for citizens arrested for dissent or disloyalty, and more. Artifacts on display in the exhibit include Lincoln’s trademark stovepipe hat, signed copies of the Emancipation Proclamation and the Thirteenth Amendment, and other historical documents.
In addition, Lincoln’s voice – in the form of excerpts from his writings and speeches – enables visitors to hear first-hand his thoughts and views on issues such as equality, slavery, freedom, democracy, justice and the Constitution’s rule of law. The exhibition is organized into six main exhibit areas: Secession Winter, Oath of Office, Crisis of Secession, Crisis of Slavery, Crisis of Civil Liberties, and Lincoln’s Legacy: the Gettysburg Address in His Time and Ours.
The Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum was created to honor “those who were killed, those who survived and those changed forever” by the 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City. The Memorial and Museum are dedicated to educating visitors about the impact of violence, informing about events surrounding the bombing, and inspiring hope and healing through lessons learned by those affected.
Museum hours are Monday – Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday, 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Ticket sales end daily at 5 p.m. For more information about the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum, please call 405.235.3313 or 1.888.542.HOPE (4673), or visit www.oklahomacitynationalmemorial.org.
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