I. C. Honors Mr. Lincoln

I. C. Honors Mr. Lincoln (HM133M)

Location: Jacksonville, IL 62650 Morgan County
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Country: United States of America
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N 39° 43.733', W 90° 14.73'

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Since 1856, Beecher Hall has been the headquarters of two of Illinois College men's societies. Sigma Pi Society and Phi Alpha Society. Both societies elected Abraham Lincoln into honorary membership in their fraternal-literary organizations in 1859. Lincoln subsequently had close contact with a number of Sigma Pi and Phi Alpha members. Dr. Newton Bateman, of Jacksonville, became close friends with Lincoln in the months before he left Springfield for Washington. Barbour Lewis, a Jacksonville lawyer, was called by Lincoln, "my particular friend." Lincoln appointed Dr. William Jayne, a Springfield physician, governor of Dakota Territory. And Lincoln employed Charles Philbrick as his private secretary in the White House. According to noted Lincoln scholar Dr. Wayne Temple: "The world quickly forgot 'Charley' Philbrick and his connection to the immortal Abraham Lincoln. But his Alma Mater now has cause to remember him, and the echoes of his footsteps and the sound of his talented voice will once more be recalled in the classic and historic Beecher Hall on the campus." These are examples of Abraham Lincoln's many important ties to Jacksonville and Illinois College.

Abraham Lincoln is depicted as he looked the night he delivered a lecture in downtown Jacksonville in February 1859. The lecture was sponsored by the Phi Alpha Society, and the proceeds were to benefit its library in Beecher Hall on the Illinois College campus. The 1983 painting is by noted Lincoln author and artist Lloyd Ostendorf. The painting hangs in the Phi Alpha Main Meeting Room.

Illinois College's Beecher Hall constructed 1829-1830, is the first college building erected in Illinois. It was originally used as the college's chapel and lecture room, housed the library, and its upper floors were used as dormitory space and, later, on the third floor, as the location in the 1840's of the state's first medical school. In the 1880's, the building was named for Dr. Edward Beecher, the college's first president and a member of the large and influential Beecher family, which produced Harriet Beecher Stowe. Dr. Beecher's sister, who wrote uncle Tom's Cabin. This painting of Beecher Hall was commissioned by the U.S.Postal Service when it commemorated the early 1990's restoration of Beecher Hall by issuing a nineteen-cent postal card in 1993.

HM NumberHM133M
Series This marker is part of the Illinois: Looking for Lincoln series
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Thursday, September 4th, 2014 at 9:12am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)15S E 736067 N 4401295
Decimal Degrees39.72888333, -90.24550000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 39° 43.733', W 90° 14.73'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds39° 43' 43.98" N, 90° 14' 43.80" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)217
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 739-799 Park St, Jacksonville IL 62650, US
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