Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln featured in living history event in Galena Feb. 22

Online Staff Report

GALENA, Ill. — February is a month for remembering the contributions of those who have gone out of their way to shape the nation we live in today. Feb. 12 is Abraham Lincoln’s birthday, Feb. 15 is Susan B. Anthony’s birthday, and Feb. 22 is George Washington’s birthday.

February is also Black History Month, for which we remember those men and women who helped pave the way in securing justice and equality for all.

Although these contributions can be easily overlooked or taken for granted, it is important to take time to reflect on them and be thankful. Saturday, Feb. 22, the Galena-Jo Daviess County Historical Society will offer a dinner performance with two presidents crucial to the development of our democracy: Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln.

A social hour with cash bar will be from 6 to 7 p.m. in the Desoto House Hotel Ballroom, and a dinner will be served at 7 p.m. Desoto House is at 230 S. Main St., Galena, Ill.

Dinner menu will include a choice of New York Strip Steak, Pretzel-Crusted Walleye or Butternut Squash Ravioli with or without chicken. Carrot Cake desserts will also be included.

At 8 p.m., a 90-minute town hall-style meeting will be held between presidents Thomas Jefferson, portrayed by Phil Lauricella of Elburn, Ill., and Abraham Lincoln, portrayed by Max Daniels of Wheaton, Ill.

In this presentation, Tom and Abe will discuss issues they feel are important, like the role of race in the country, national defense and so on. Then, they will give you, the American citizens, an opportunity to raise your voice and ask questions of your own. Guests will be encouraged to ask about their personal philosophies, inquire about issues both past and present, and probe about their individual successes and shortcoming.

The event will be moderated by Mrs. Mary Todd Lincoln, portrayed by Donna Daniels of Wheaton, Ill.

Society Director Nancy Breed explained: “Max and Donna Daniels are quite familiar with Galena and its history. With Lincoln having been here and Galena having an important role in the Civil War, it’s a natural destination for them. The Daniels have been here many times, and we enjoy their performances as the Lincolns, but having Thomas Jefferson here will be something new. He’s a figure in American history to which we don’t get exposed very frequently around here. It will be something different from what we have seen and heard in the past.”

The all-inclusive price for this living history event will be $50 per ticket. All proceeds to benefit the Galena-Jo Daviess County Historical Society. To find out more information and to reserve tickets, call (815) 777-9129, or e-mail

Posted Feb. 19, 2014 

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