On this date 152 years ago Lincoln’s body was lying in state here in Chicago. Throughout the day-at a rate of 7,000 per hour-mourners filed past the casket paying their final respects to President Lincoln. That evening, the Lincoln Funeral Train would make the last portion of it’s journey home to Springfield, IL.
The Tribune solemnly reported, “Our father, our friend, our deliverer, is dead; the first outthrust of grief, great, overwhelming, though it were, was yet broken by the excitement of the occasion, and our subsequent wailings even have not been without sad interest. But now that the form is forever departed, naught save the memory of the man remains, now comes the rank desolation and sorrow, which though not so demonstrative, is more affective. The head of the nation, of the race, is gone from among us – even his form has departed. We mourn him now as indeed gone; the place which knew him so long, shall know him no more forever.”
Back in 2015, during the marking of the Lincoln Sesquicentennial, Abraham Lincoln Book Shop, Inc. organized and staged a commemorative event marking the anniversary of the Lincoln funeral train’s arrival in Chicago. Watch the video of our program: