Lincoln and the Jews: An Interview with Dr. Jonathan Sarna
April 3, 2015

Did you know that more than twice as many books have been written about Abraham Lincoln than weeks have passed since his death almost 150 years ago? With Passover beginning at sundown, we’re honoring Lincoln’s legacy by exploring an untold aspect of his personal life and political career: his friendships with Jews. During his tenure…

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Guest Blogger Harold Holzer on Lincoln and the Jews
March 13, 2015

To celebrate the upcoming opening of our groundbreaking exhibition, Lincoln and the Jews on March 20, Harold Holzer, the Roger Hertog Fellow at the New-York Historical Society and Chief Historian to the exhibition, has signed on as this week’s guest blogger. In his post, he highlights the show and the exciting history it illuminates. So…

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The Speech That Won Lincoln New York
February 27, 2014

On February 27, 1860, Abraham Lincoln stood before a crowd at Cooper Union on 8th Street in New York City, attempting to convince a strongly Democratic city that he, a Republican, deserved the presidency. Until then he was thought of mostly as a country lawyer, but his speech at Cooper Union let New York Republicans…

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When New York Wanted To Secede
January 9, 2014

Most people think of New York as the center of all that is liberal and progressive in America, with strong, Dutch-instilled values of tolerance permeating the culture. However, New York is also a place of business, and before the Civil War that meant it dealt heavily with the business of slavery. In December 1860, South…

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Happy Thanksgivukkah!
November 27, 2013

Tomorrow is the 150th anniversary of Thanksgiving becoming a national holiday, thanks to Abraham Lincoln. But for the first time since 1888, the holiday will coincide with the first day of Hanukkah. So celebrate now, because this is not going to happen for another 70,000 years (give or take). The above Hanukkah lamp, or Hanukkiot, was…

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Wounded Scout: Rogers Takes On The Gravity Of The Civil War
February 7, 2013

In honor of our upcoming exhibition, John Rogers: American Stories, curator Kim Orcutt will be writing a series of posts about his life, his work, and how he earned the nickname “The People’s Sculptor.” Watch Kim Orcutt and Harold Holzer tour the exhibition on YouTube.  Over the night of February 9/10, 1864, more than one hundred Union…

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Give Thanks For The First Thanksgiving
November 22, 2012

Thanksgiving may have been celebrated by Pilgrims and Native Americans in New England with feasts of corn and eel (yes, eel), but it wasn’t until 1863 that it became a truly American holiday. Sarah Josepha Hale, author of the famous rhyme “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” was the first to suggest that Thanksgiving should be celebrated nationwide,…

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Finding Lincoln…In Queens?
October 4, 2012

Over the weekend we took a trip to Socrates Sculpture Park in Astoria, Queens, where we encountered Bundith Phunsombatlert’s piece Wayfinding: 100 NYC Public Sculptures. The site-specific project features signs of 100 public sculptures in New York City, and provides the distance and direction to each from the park. And what did we see among the…

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Abraham Lincoln: The Coolest President?
July 6, 2012

In case you hadn’t heard, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter has made its way to the big screen. Starring Benjamin Walker, it traces the President as he discovers that vampires are planning to take over the country, and as he makes it his mission to eliminate the threat. Recently, author, screenwriter, and producer Seth Grahame-Smith sat…

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