|Lincoln Farm Association certificate (1909)|
Dated June 17, 1909 and addressed to “Lottie Brown” the text reads, in part:
You have been this day enrolled as an honorary member of the Lincoln Farm Association, a patriotic organization formed by American citizens for the purpose of preserving as a National Park, the farm on which Abraham Lincoln was born.Here's the story.
Abraham Lincoln was born in a cabin on the Sinking Spring Farm (Kentucky) in 1809. As the centennial of this event approached, a group of citizens felt that his birthplace should be preserved for future generations. In fact, the cabin had been moved many times and was exhibited in 1897 at Nashville, Tennessee, where it was united with another from Kentucky—purportedly the cabin in which Jefferson Davis was born. Both cabins were later dismantled and shipped to New York. After an appearance at the 1901 Pan American Exposition in Buffalo, their logs were stored in the basement of a Long Island mansion.
Formed in 1906, the Lincoln Farm Association purchased the Lincoln logs for $1,000 and the Sinking Spring Farm for $3,600. (This was the same year that President Roosevelt signed the Antiquities Act, which offered protection for federally-owned sites.) The expensive part of the project was the grand Memorial Building, in which the reconstructed log cabin would be enshrined. Despite donations from over 100,000 people, financial concerns forced the building plans to be scaled down (along with the dimensions of the cabin), but still the cornerstone was not laid by President Roosevelt until 1909. The memorial was dedicated two years later by President Taft, whose signature is printed just above "Mark Twain" on the Lincoln Farm certificate.
|Lottie Brown at Low Plain School (c. 1905)|
- National Park Service chronology at www.nps.gov/abli/planyourvisit/sinkingspringfarm.htm
- Alston Brown profile at www.nh.ngb.army.mil/images/stories/History/1st_NH_Cav.pdf