ALA, NEH announce 200 site tour for “Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War” traveling exhibition

For Immediate Release
Tue, 10/11/2011

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CHICAGO – The American Library Association (ALA) Public Programs Office, in partnership with the National Constitution Center (NCC) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), is pleased to announce a large-scale tour for the traveling exhibition “Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War.” Two hundred sites, including libraries, museums, community centers, heritage organizations and institutions of higher learning, will host the exhibition for a period of six weeks each from August 2011 through December 2015. To view the list of selected sites, visit www.ala.org/lincolnconstitution.

Funding for the exhibition and tour is provided by a major grant from NEH. Each site will receive a $750 grant from NEH to support expenses related to exhibition programming.  Participating institutions will present at least two free public programs featuring a lecture or discussion by a qualified scholar on exhibition themes.  All showings of the exhibition will be free and open to the public. 

Using the U.S. Constitution as its cohesive thread, “Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War” offers a fresh and innovative perspective on the Civil War that brings into focus the constitutional crises at the heart of this great conflict. The exhibition identifies these crises—the secession of the Southern states, slavery and wartime civil liberties—and explores how Lincoln sought to meet these political and constitutional challenges.

Following the positive response to the ongoing tour of 50 public, academic and special libraries, funding from NEH will support the expansion of this exhibit tour to reach 200 communities through libraries and other centers for community learning. “Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War” is supported by NEH’s We the People initiative, which aims to stimulate and enhance the teaching, study and understanding of American history and culture. For more information about the traveling exhibition, visit www.ala.org/lincolnconstitution.

The ALA Public Programs Office promotes cultural and community programming as an essential part of library service in all types and sizes of libraries. Successful library programming initiatives have included “Let’s Talk About It” reading and discussion series, traveling exhibitions, film discussion programs, the Great Stories CLUB, LIVE @ your library and more. Recently, the ALA Public Programs Office developed www.ProgrammingLibrarian.org, an online resource center bringing librarians timely and valuable information to support them in the creation of high-quality cultural programs for their communities. For more information about the ALA Public Programs Office, visit www.ala.org/publicprograms.

The National Constitution Center is one of the nation’s most exciting new museums and a leading provider of constitutionally-themed education programs.  Created through the Constitution Heritage Act of 1988, the NCC addresses the need to better educate Americans about their Constitution and citizenship rights and responsibilities.  Its mission is to increase public understanding of, and appreciation for, the Constitution, its history, and it contemporary relevance through an interactive museum facility and national outreach programs.

Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports learning in history, literature, philosophy and other areas of the humanities.  NEH grants enrich classroom learning, create and preserve knowledge and bring ideas to life through public television, radio, new technologies, exhibitions and programs in libraries, museums and other community places.  Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at www.neh.gov.