Lincoln comes to town

This post is dedicated to two of my ancestors who served in the Union Army during the Civil War:

John W. Lemmon (ancestor on my mother’s side), from Champaign County, Ohio, served three years in the Civil War from August 11, 1862 until August 14, 1865.  He participated in battles at Richmond, the Siege of Vicksburg, and Nashville, among others. He received an Honorable discharge in August of 1865 at the age of 23.

Thomas Bryant (ancestor on my father’s side), from Washington County, Kentucky, served as a Union soldier during the Civil War. In May of 1864, his son and my ancestor, Ulysses Grant Bryant was born. Thomas enrolled in Company D of the 54th Regiment of the Kentucky Mounted Infantry Volunteers in September of the same year. He was honorably discharged in September of 1865. The 54th Kentucky was doing provost duty (policing activities) in the country around Lexington, Ky and operating against guerillas in Henry Co., Ky. Thomas received a pension from the government for the loss of sight in his right eye caused by cold and exposure during his service. The pension started at $6.00 per month in 1883 and was incrementally increased with time to $20.00 per month. He received it until his death in 1910.

01-Lincoln- 2013-11-09
Mark has a conversation with the president.
Lincoln is portrayed by Stan Wernz who has made the 16th president come to life for more than thirty years.

On a beautiful, and perhaps one of the last temperate, autumn Saturday we traveled to Governor Bebb Metropark in Butler County, Ohio to shoot photos of the living history program celebrating the life of Abraham Lincoln. I’ve never been to one of these, although I have always been fascinated by some of the Civil War reenactments that occur around the country. I found “Lincoln comes to town” to be a fun and engaging day that sparked my imagination.


Governor Bebb Park has a pioneer village that members of the sponsoring organizations moved into and took over for the weekend.

03-bugler-2013-11-09Buglers played their plaintain notes,

06-soldiers-2013-11-09a band of soldiers, the young and the old,

05-soldiers-2013-11-09performed their military drills.


A  blacksmith set out his wares.


Ladies took a morning stroll with coffee in a metal cup.


And Abe Lincoln visited the soldier’s camp, sometimes speaking with others,

10-Lincoln-2013-11-09sometimes lost in pensive thoughts.


I had chicken pot pie in the tavern for lunch.


I have no idea what a couple of these tools are for.


Governor Bebb Pioneer village was the perfect venue for the event,

14-flag-2013-11-09and was suitably decorated for the celebration.

19-stage-2013-11-09A stage was set up in the cemetery for Lincoln to give his Gettysburg Address, (but unfortunately we did not stay long enough to hear it. We did, however hear his speech upon leaving Springfield.)

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The ladies made use of the stage to have a fashion show where they explained the specifics of their dress.

18-young_soldier-2013-11-09This young man watched with a detached interest. Some things never change.


Sponsoring organizations include:

Metroparks of Butler County
6th Ohio Volunteer Infantry Company A
Ladies Living History Society of Greater Cincinnati
Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War
Sister Anthony O’Connell Auxilliary Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War

18 thoughts on “Lincoln comes to town”

  1. This looks like a great day, Christine. You know Mary Todd Lincoln’s home is in Lexington, but I have never visited. That’s tragic.

    Hope your week is going well, and if I don’t talk to you before then, have a happy Thanksgiving.

    Hugs from Ecuador,

    1. I really didn’t know that about Mary Todd Lincoln’s home. Lexington isn’t that far. Maybe I should make a day trip. I love seeing historical homes. You have a happy Thanksgiving too, even if you are out of the country. Will you celebrate still?

    1. It is interesting to me. Many of us here in this country have had ancestors here during this time period, although not everyone. My husband’s family are pretty much all immigrants from Germany in the mid-to-late 1800s.

    1. I don’t know if proud is accurate, but certainly interesting. My ancestors just happened to be at this place and time and were able to participate. There are stories in everyone’s past.

    1. HIstory buff are you? I love doing this kind of thing too. I probably should plan and do more of it.

      I was looking at my stats the other day and you are my #1 commentor right now. Thanks for sticking with me.

  2. My great great grandfather fought in the Civil War, as did his brother. Both from Vermont. One morning, they stole a frying pan of bacon and eggs off a confederate fire . . . and kept it as a souvenir. 😀

    1. I love family stories like that. It’s funny what people want others to know and remember about them. I’m sure it made a good story at the time, as it still does now.

    1. I know. Although the “common” women, or farm wives, did not wear all these hoops and accessories. They were down to the basics so they were able to work in the home and hopefully not set themselves on fire.

  3. Hi Christine .. that looks a wonderful place to visit – especially if you can get the historical aspects of the Lincoln address. Interesting it’s a village to be able to live in during the weekends .. looks a lovely place.

    Clothes, tools, working days etc .. all interesting to us now – lovely photos and I hope you get to go to Lexington …

    Happy Thanksgiving – cheers Hilary

    1. I don’t think the participants actually lived in the buildings over the weekend. And clearly the only facilities that I saw was one port-o-let. So I’m not sure just how comfortable that would be. But we did eat at the tavern. 🙂

  4. Hi Christine, I sent an email to your aol address. I’m a cousin, grandson of your Uncle Leslie. My son and I have been doing a lot of genealogy research on our family that you might be interested in. Re Civil War: We have letters and other documents from a relative that survived Camp Chase. Very interesting stuff. In one of the letters he said they would save scraps of food so they could have a feast on Thanksgiving. Unfortunately, most of them became very ill after eating this feast. Also of interest is a newspaper article on a relative who was a ship captain on the great lakes. His ship went aground in a terrible winter storm. He and most of the crew froze to death. Have other stories about relatives killed on the railroad.


Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: