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Abraham Lincoln umbrella

Umbrella that sheltered Lincoln shortly before his inauguration

A Lincoln supporter held this umbrella over the president-elect's head as snow began to fall in Utica, New York, in 1861.

The rain in which the Presidential party entered Pittsburgh last night was still pouring down this morning, but the President-elect was nevertheless true to his word . . . and delivered the address . . . to a multitude of five thousand people, under an ocean of umbrellas.

—Henry Villard, journalist, 1861

Months after his 1861 election, President-elect Abraham Lincoln made a historic train ride to Washington, D.C., for his inaugural. With his inaugural speech he hoped to cool the fires of a looming Civil War. Instead he battled blizzards in New York with this umbrella.

Both the fabric and frame of the umbrella need conservation.  Based on early estimates, the cost to conserve the Lincoln umbrella will likely cost $5,000.

Please contact Wade Wallace, wwallace@kshistory.org, or 785-272-8681, ext. 210, for more information, or make a donation through our Museum Store Online.