UPDATE: Scroll down for the completed Gettysburg Address video AND pictures from our experience this past winter “Lighting” the Lincoln Statue. What a great year students have had with this statue and the War Memorial Center! ______________________________
This afternoon 5 students and I had the pleasure of reading the Gettysburg Address with 45 other people at the Abraham Lincoln Statue on Milwaukee’s lakefront. The War Memorial Center organized the event as an answer to a challenge by documentary film maker, Ken Burns, to encourage Americans to memorize Lincoln’s important speech. Burns is releasing a new documentary, The Address, April 15th.
My students and I just read the Gettysburg Address last week in class. We discussed the importance of the 10 sentence speech in dedicating the Gettysburg cemetery but also how it rallied the North during a turbulent stretch of the war. We also analyzed how the speech spoke to so many different constituencies, both white and black civilians, and encouraged all Americans to increase their support of the long and bloody war. Standing there below the bronzed Lincoln and hearing all these voices, in unison, speak the Address reinforced the magnitude of Lincoln’s words and multitude of meanings those words still have today.
Click here for a link for Fox 6 local news coverage of the event today, which includes a brief interview with one my students. WTMJ 620 radio also interviewed the boys. (When played in class, the rest of the students gave a round of applause to these famous students).
Pictures from the Lighting of the Lincoln Statue this past December…