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Peterboro connects to Lincoln, John Brown

The 17th Annual Peterboro Civil War Weekend adds the commemoration of Abraham Lincoln's 200th Birthday and the recognition of the 150th anniversary of John Brown's Raid on Harpers Ferry to its programs for Saturday and Sunday, June 13 and 14, 2009, as well as presents new exhibits.

At 11:30 on both days of the event Jack Baylis and his grand daughter Jessica, portraying Abraham Lincoln and Grace Bedell, will tell the story of why President Lincoln had a beard. President Lincoln will stroll the green in Peterboro during the weekend giving children copper portraits of The Great Emancipator.

At noon on Saturday, June 13, Milton C. Sernett, Ph.D. professor emeritus Syracuse University will present a free lecture with illustrations on The Civil War of John Brown at the Smithfield Community Center, 5255 Pleasant Valley Road, Peterboro.

John Brown's raid on Harpers Ferry Oct. 16, 1859 was one of the sparks that ignited the Civil War. Brown's visits to Peterboro were to secure the support of wealthy abolitionist Gerrit Smith of Peterboro who was the primary financial backer of "The Secret Six" that supported Brown.

Sernett's presentation will be the beginning of an afternoon open house hosted by the Cabinet of Freedom for the National Abolition Hall of Fame and Museum. Banners of hall of fame inductees, displays on slavery and refreshments will be available. Parking and admission are free.

Postal cancellations for Lincoln's 200th birthday and for the 150th year of Brown's raid will be available during the weekend.

In the evening at the Smithfield Community Center the 77th N.Y. Regimental Balladeers will present a concert "Mine Eyes Have Seen The Glory: Lincoln & The Music of the Civil War." The Balladeers use original Civil War music arrangements and lyrics to convey the thoughts, motives and sorrows of the men and women during the war. The music is presented as it would have been performed in camp or the family parlor. Admission to the 8 p.m. concert is $ at the door.

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