Donations for museum's Lincoln collection near $7m

Holding more than 220,000 newspaper clippings, alongside 30,000 objects, Indiana State Museum's collection of Abraham Lincoln memorabilia is undeniably impressive.

It is also very hard work to look after, and soon after the collection was donated to the museum in 2008, they decided to raise $12.5m in donations to look after the pieces, and went straight ahead with this even after being advised that they might struggle to raise funds during a recession.

This decision has been more than vindicated. In the first six months following the call for donations, the total has risen to $6.9m. Regardless of the economic conditions, Americans were happy to dip their hands in their pockets for their beloved Civil War President.

The die-hard enthusiasm for Lincoln memorabilia gives another indication - following the sale for $103,000 of a rare signed Lincoln photograph - of the resilience of classic Americana as an investment option.

Indiana's collection includes signed copies of the Emancipation Proclamation and the 13th Amendment, which between them abolished slavery, alongside the chair in which Lincoln sat for some of his most famous presidential photographs, and the last portrait Lincoln sat for.

Another document the museum has yet to get its hands on is a document Lincoln signed, promoting the well known soldier James H Carleton to Brigadier General for an important task in the Civil War.



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