Illinois will mark the anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s death with a solemn ceremony at his tomb and a thought-provoking play at the museum dedicated to preserving his legacy.
The ceremony at the Lincoln Tomb in Oak Ridge Cemetery takes place Saturday, April 13, by the Sons of Union of the Civil War and the Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States.
The event begins at 9:45 a.m. with a military processional. Then at 10, addresses will be given by the commanders-in-chief of the two organizations.
Memorial wreaths will be placed at the tomb’s entrance and patriotic music will be performed by the 33rd Illinois Volunteer Regiment Band, a Civil War-era group. A Civil War re-enactment group, the Rockford Zouaves, will post and retire the colors.
Also on April 13 is the return of the one-act play One Destiny at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum. It has been a year-and-a-half since the play was performed at the museum.
Written by Richard Hellesen, “One Destiny” is about two men coming to terms with the president’s assassination. One is Harry Hawk, the actor who was onstage when the bullet was fired, and the other is Harry Ford, manager of the theater where the crime took place. One Destiny premiered at Ford’s Theatre in Washington, D.C., and is stilled performed there.
The play launches with performances at 1:30 in the afternoon on Saturday, Sunday and Monday in the museum’s Union Theater. It will continue to be performed throughout the summer.
The family-friendly play, sponsored by Chase Bank with support from Barbara Archer and R-Lou Barker, lasts 40 minutes. A Q&A session will take place afterwards. Tickets are free with a museum admission and are distributed beginning at 11:30 a.m.
Lincoln, the nation’s 16th president, was shot at Ford’s Theatre on the night of April 14, 1865. He died the next morning.