September 2017 Newsletter


Erin Directors Photo

Dear Friends,

September 22nd was the first day of fall and the anniversary of Lincoln issuing the Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, which started the 100-day countdown to him signing the official proclamation. This year we commemorated that date with an effort to enhance public knowledge — hosting our first Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon, inside the Cottage.

Knowledge is necessary to freedom and empowerment, and the more we know about the Cottage and what happened here, the better we can serve you and empower people to advance the cause of freedom through this home for brave ideas. Frequently, our discoveries lead to more work. For example, this summer, our Senior Preservationist discovered a 170-year old design flaw with a window on the second floor of the Cottage, leading to water infiltration in the library. We have the ability to diagnose and address preservation issues with the National Monument as they happen thanks to staff expertise and your support. It also means we can keep the Cottage safe and open to the public without missing a beat, continuing tours and welcoming the first school students of the new year. We also welcomed over 800 folks to our first annual Homecoming a couple of weekends ago, combining two popular programs into a full day of activities. Among those we welcomed home were the Bucktails, reenactors of the 150th Pennsylvania Volunteers, Company K, who also fired the opening shot for the race. It was a day to celebrate our freedom and acknowledge the work that still needs to be done to ensure all people, everywhere, can be free.

With appreciation,


PRESERVATION UPDATE: Discoveries in the East Wing of the Cottage

The north wall of Cottage room “113”

September ushered in a new use for the previously unused space off the East Wing of the Cottage–see our feature on the Petworth Cooperative Playgroup below–and with this, a shifting of our attention to the room and its special history. Read on for Senior Preservationist Jeff Larry’s update on the work, history and preservation of this space typically not seen by the public.

Read the full update here.



Back by popular demand, and drawing inspiration from Abraham Lincoln’s legendary humor and self-deprecation, President Lincoln’s Cottage and The DC Improv are again partnering to present Two Faces Comedy, the first comedy series to transform Lincoln’s living room into a comedy den. This will be a series of three comedy nights:

Wednesday, September 27th- Veteran Comedy Nights *Sold out*

Tuesday, October 17th– Kid’s Night with ComedySportz (5:30PM)

Purchase tickets for Night 2

Tuesday, November 7th– “With Malice Toward None,” with Bengt Washburn (7:30PM)

Purchase tickets for Night 3

COTTAGE CONVERSATION: Stark Mad Abolitionists

Tomorrow! Join us as author and former Chief Historian of the Park Service Robert Sutton discusses his book, Stark Mad Abolitionists: Lawrence, Kansas, and the Battle over Slavery in the Civil War Era, alongside President Lincoln’s Cottage’s Executive Director, Erin Carlson Mast.

WHEN: Thursday, September 28

Reception- 6 PM, Robert H. Smith Visitor Education Center

Lecture- 6:30 PM, President Lincoln’s Cottage

COST: $10 for the lecture and $10 for the reception (free for members at $250 and above)

Click here for more information on the event click here to purchase your ticket

STAFF SPOTLIGHT: Jeopardy! Champ Zach Klitzman 

You might recognize him from Jeopardy!, but Zach Klitzman, the Senior Executive Assistant, is an integral part of the President Lincoln’s Cottage team. Helping to ensure operations run smoothly, he’s no stranger to wearing many hats (figuratively and literally. See above.) See where he is now, a year after his big win: read his full spotlight here.



We’re thrilled to welcome the Petworth Cooperative Playgroup to the Cottage and as a member of Team Lincoln. Read on to find out why you’ll see chalk and tots scattered on the lawn every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and how Lincoln’s brave ideas will continue to grow in the littlest of ones.

Young Lincoln fans play on the north lawn


Isn’t the Cottage beautiful? Prove it by submitting your photos of President Lincoln’s Cottage to the Wiki Loves Monuments Content. Anyone can submit their own personal photo; the contest runs until the end of September and features photos of National Monuments around the country. Winning photos are then submitted into the international contest.

Check out past winners here.

Click here to enter your photo of President Lincoln’s Cottage (We’re officially listed as the “U.S. Soldiers’ and Airmen’s Home” on the National Register of Historic Places)

Be sure to use @Wikimonuments and tag @LincolnsCottage on social media, too!


The Bucktails shooting off at the starting line of the 2017 Freedom 5K

Thanks to everyone who came out to run, walk, play, and give for our first ever Homecoming, Saturday, September 16. Overall, we hosted 800-plus people on the grounds; guests created arts and crafts, performed in an interactive theatre (thanks to Shakespeare Folgers Library), met the Bucktails — who did double duty and shot off muskets for the beginning of the Freedom 5K — rode ponies, toured the Cottage, picnicked on the grounds, and more! Congratulations to all of our runners of the Freedom 5K, and special congratulations to the top finishers: Cary Chaffee and Ilana Nevins. All proceeds from the Freedom 5K go towards educational programs at the Cottage.

Guests enjoying the lawn during Homecoming

For more photos from the day, click here.



Support our educational programs, preservation efforts and public events by making a contribution to President Lincoln’s Cottage. Donate online today.


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