What is it about?

Evidence hidden in plain sight for over a century suggests that the actor Edwin Forrest gave a speech that influenced Abraham Lincoln at Gettysburg Address.

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Why is it important?

This article broadens our understanding of the influence of performance on antebellum American life, and offers that rare thing, potentially new understanding of Lincoln, increasing appreciation of his legacy.

Perspectives

Carlyon has enjoyed a longstanding fascination with Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War, a fascination he combines here with his scholarship in 19th-century politics and culture, all of it woven through with his keen interest in politics and experience as a professional performer.

Dr David Carlyon

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This page is a summary of: From Broadway Tabernacle to the Gettysburg Battlefield: Did Edwin Forrest Influence Abraham Lincoln?, Theatre Survey, December 2014, Cambridge University Press, DOI: 10.1017/s004055741400057x.
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