Today (Monday) is the 150th anniversary of the Springfield funeral for President Abraham Lincoln. Sunday wrapped up three days full of activities to commemorate that. The day started easily enough with a "press conference" -- where reenactors posed as Lincoln's generals talked, in part, about what might have caused Lincoln's assassination.
"We believe there was a conspiracy by the Confederate government, and they have devious plans ahead," says General Hunter, a character in the mock press conference.
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"Not everybody believes in these conspiracy theories," says another General. "The President was the South's best friend in the government."
The generals later marched from downtown Springfield to Oak Ridge Cemetery. Playing the part of Reverend Doctor Matthew Simpson, retired Rhode Island Supreme Court Chief Justice Frank Williams said Lincoln was a good man.
"His moral power gave him preeminence," says Williams, as Simpson. "The people saw Abraham Lincoln as an honest man who would do what was right regardless of the consequences. It was this moral feeling which gave him the greatest hold on the people."
Lincoln's greatest accomplishment? Williams, as Simpson, said it was what he called "the freeing of a whole race of people."
For many, attending the weekend activities surrounding the 150th anniversary of President Abraham Lincoln's funeral in Springfield was the ultimate learning experience. Take Charlotte Swanson of Evanston.
"It gives my kids, who are nine and six, a chance to walk in history," says Swanson. "We wouldn't have been able to do that if we wouldn't have come to Springfield."
Ten-year-old Caitlin Fallert of Brookfield came to the capitol with her Girl Scout Troop, and was really looking forward to the funeral reenactment.
"It's really cool, and you get to see what happened when the funeral happened," said Fallert. "You get to act like you were [there] during that time."
Fallert and her troops also went to the Lincoln Library and Museum -- twice. She says it was an honor to learn about Lincoln.
Some of those playing the role of pallbearers at the funeral service were direct descendants of the original pallbearers.