Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Abraham Lincoln in New Hampshire

A Sesquicentennial Recreation

One hundred fifty years ago today, on March 3, 1860, Abraham Lincoln made a speech in Exeter, New Hampshire. He had sent his son Robert Todd Lincoln to Phillips Exeter Academy, on the recommendation of a fellow congressman, Amos Tuck of New Hampshire. Amos Tuck was an abolitionist who had held a secret meeting in 1853 to form the Republican Party, also in Exeter.

After speaking at the Cooper Union in New York City, he drew crowds in New Hampshire at the cities of Manchester, Concord, Dover and finally Exeter. Dr. Bill, a fellow genea-blogger, wrote about the Cooper Union address on his posting 21 February 2010 at These speeches helped confirm Lincoln as a serious candidate for the presidency, and he became the overwhelming favorite for the New Hampshire delegation at the Republican National Convention in Chicago.

This Saturday, on March 6, 2010, Exeter, New Hampshire will recreate Lincoln’s visit with several events, including the speech at the Exeter Town Hall. Role player, Steve Wood, who is a cousin from our common ancestor Francis Wyman of Woburn, will play Lincoln and recreate his speech. Other events will take place over the weekend.

Events in Lincoln Return to Exeter, March 2010

Wednesday, March 3 – 7:30 pm. Rick Schubart presents Abraham Lincoln: from Springfield, Illinois to Exeter, New Hampshire and Beyond at the Exeter Historical Society

Thursday, March 4, 7pm
Harold Holzer Presentation, Phillips Exeter Academy Assembly Hall

Saturday, March 6
10am – 4pm --- NH Historical Society Lincoln Exhibit at the Exeter Historical Society
10am – 4pm --- Lincoln Art Show at the Town Hall gallery
10am, 12pm & 3:30pm --- Guided Walking Tours, beginning at Gale Park
11am – 4pm ---- Exeter High School History Club students lead children’s activities at the Exeter Public Library
11am – Rick Schubart and Mike Pride present a program on Lincoln in NH at the Exeter Public Library followed by a booksigning (Mike Pride’s new edition of Elwyn Page’s Abraham Lincoln in New Hampshire)
2:30pm – 3:30 ---- Band Concert at the First Congregational Church
5pm --- Lincoln starts his procession & band begins to play
5:15pm --- Lincoln arrives at Exeter Town Hall
5:30pm – 7pm --- Main Event at Exeter’s Town Hall

Thanks to a grant from the NH Humanities Council, the Exeter Historical Society has created the Lincoln Sesquicentennial (150th) program, partnering with Phillips Exeter Academy, SAU 16, Exeter Public Library, American Independence Museum, Exeter Area Chamber of Commerce, Exeter Arts Association, Town of Exeter, Inn by the Bandstand, Exeter Inn, Infinite Imaging of Exeter, Water Street Bookstore, NH Historical Society, Manchester Historic Association and the Woodman Institute.

Please contact the Exeter Historical Society for more information. (603) 778-2335 or at the website

Abraham Lincoln in New Hampshire, by Elwin L. Page (author) and Mike Pride (author, editor), , Concord, NH : Monitor Publishing Company, 2009

For more information on Steve Wood of Claremont, New Hampshire, Lincoln role player, see the website

The photo above, of Steve Wood playing President Lincoln, was taken at the 2006 Wyman Family Association Meeting in Keene, New Hampshire.

Copyright 2010, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

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