Sunday was the 100th anniversary of Ronald Reagan’s birth, but instead of doing something to honor our country’s 40th president, I did something related to our 16th president, Abraham Lincoln.

“Abraham Lincoln: Self-Made in America,” a traveling display of reproduced artifacts related to Lincoln’s life and death, opened at the Ottawa Scouting Museum this past weekend. It will be there until April 12, at which time the exhibit will be transported to the next stop on its two-year tour around Illinois. (Interestingly, April 12 also will mark the 150th anniversary of when Confederate artillery fired on Fort Sumter, starting the American Civil War.)

The Lincoln exhibit consists of seven learning stations and a dollhouse-sized replica of Lincoln’s home in Springfield. (The dollhouse was created by Ottawa resident Nancy Dominis.) Among the reproduced artifacts are Lincoln’s stovepipe hat, an ax the president used to chop wood for Union soldiers, a toy cannon given to his son Tad, and two Lincoln life masks.

Mollie Perrot, executive director of the Ottawa Scouting Museum, told me turnout for the exhibit was better than expected during its opening weekend, considering the Super Bowl took place Sunday.

The exhibit is worth seeing and doesn’t take long to go through it. If you get an opportunity to see it in Ottawa or elsewhere, I recommend you do so.

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