This week has been lovely in most parts of America. Here in Illinois, it’s been better-than-spring warm weather and sun. It’s only March (generally a chilled and cloudy month) so everyone has been moving about outdoors, soaking in this blessing.
My daughter and went to one of our favorite spots, Lincoln Memorial Gardens. We live in Springfield, Illinois which is the adult home of President Abraham Lincoln. He and his family lived here for over 28 years before his presidency, and he returned to Springfield to be buried in a somber, grand tomb in the Oak Ridge Cemetery. Lincoln Memorial Gardens is a vast natural space cultivated to maintain the wild feel of the natural Illinois landscape as it was when Abe lived here over 150 years ago. According to the website:
The garden is a hundred-acre tract along the shore of Lake Springfield planted with native trees, wildflowers and prairie plants. It is a place where visitors can enjoy nature in all seasons, learn to be stewards of the environment, and discover the relationships among plants, wildlife, water, soil and sunlight in an atmosphere of peace and beauty.
It was such a special day with my daughter as she set free on the trails. We stopped to photograph the words of wisdom on each of the benches throughout the wood. It’s these messages, and their peaceful woodland delivery, that I want to share with my daughter:
Americans (especially Illinoisans) know Abe and recall his contributions to our country proudly. In fact, people all over the world know Abe. If you haven’t had the chance to be immersed into the history of his life, you might need a refresher. A few facts about America’s 16th President:
Lincoln was President during the American Civil War, possibly America’s worst source of pain. The war was predicated on the argument that slaves were property. Abe believed that all people should be free and back this principal with a full and aching conviction. More than three million men fought in the war. Two percent of the population—more than 620,000—died in it.
Abe was assassinated in 1965 while at the theater with his wife and another couple.
Abe was a self-made man out of the Kentucky countryside. He self-educated himself through contact with other inspired people and a saturating love for books and learning.
During his lifetime two of his four sons died prematurely. His wife, Mary, suffered greatly from depression and mental illness. It was these heartaches that accompanied him through his political fight for freedom.
He was a very compelling public speaker, known for his famous speech at Gettysburg, PA where 23,053 Federal (Northern) and 28,063 Confederate (Southern) soldiers were killed.
For more information about Mr. Lincoln, start here: http://www.whitehouse.gov/about/presidents/abrahamlincoln
I can’t think of a better moment: a space of calm, serene nature shared with my daughter in the presence of justice and wisdom.
Where do you go to find peace and inspiration?
This is an original post to World Moms Blog by Jill Barth of Illinois, USA. She can be found blogging at Small Things Honored.
Photo credit to the author.