It’s easy to be sad when remembering those we’ve lost. But the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s death brought humor to Springfield. Illinois native Tom Dreesen took the stage at Springfield’s remembrance ceremony to talk about a side of Lincoln we rarely hear about – his funny side. “In the campaign of 1840, debating a political antagonist Jesse V. Thomas, at the courthouse right here in Springfield, Ill., Thomas made some sarcastic remarks that stung Lincoln,” Dreesen told a crowd of hundreds gathered in Springfield’s Union Square Park.
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“And for the first time on the stump, or in public when it was his turn to speak, he resorted to mimicry for effect. And in this, he was without a rival. Dreesen says Lincoln was melancholic throughout much of his life and suffered great losses, and humor was how he got through a lot of it. Lincoln was shot in the head by John Wilkes Booth as he and wife Mary Todd watched a play at Ford’s Theater in Washington on April 14, 1865. He died hours later, on the morning of April 15, 1865.