Lincoln Remembered On 150th Anniversary of Death

Apr 15, 2015

Spectators stand for the presentation of the colors during the memorial services.
Credit Lisa Ryan/WUIS

A day of remembrance was held at the state capital Wednesday for President Abraham Lincoln, on the 150th anniversary of his death.

The ceremony included a 21-gun salute, music from a military band and a prayer from Chaplain Maurice Buford of the U.S. Navy.

"We honor him because his flame of leadership still kindles, his seat at the eternal table of prominence is permanent and because he continues to teach this great nation to always have the faith that might makes right,” Buford said.

Speakers included Gov. Bruce Rauner and Tom Dreesen, a comedian born in Illinois. Dreesen spoke about Lincoln's sense of humor, which he says was often self-deprecating. "He would poke fun at himself and his looks,” Dreeson said. “In a speech in 1861, he opened with, 'I stepped upon this platform that I may see you and you may see me. In the arrangement, I have the best of the bargain."

The event ended with a rendition of "God Bless the USA" by Jim Cornelison, the singer for the Chicago Blackhawks.

Lincoln lived in Springfield before he became president and is buried in Illinois' capital city. A national re-enactment of Lincoln's funeral procession will end in Springfield the weekend of May 2.