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HistoryBuff.com is a nonprofit organization and we have two outreach programs that we take on the road. One is a selection of presentations and the other is a traveling Lincoln assassination museum. Rick Brown, the speaker and collector started his odyssey 48 years ago - A lifetime of research and collecting!

Historical Presentations

1) Little-known Facts About the Lincolns and the Civil War: This presentation can be customized to the time slot you desire - Anywhere from 30 minutes to a full 2 hours. You will be surprised at how much is little-known about this well-known president. This presentation is geared toward ages 8 to 100. A few examples:

  • There is a major scene in the classic 1939 Wizard of Oz that utilizes a HUGE prop originally owned by Abraham Lincoln. What is it?

  • There is a current actor that is related to Abraham Lincoln's mother. This actor has played the key role in dozens of movies in the past 20 years. Who is it?

  • The government had placed an order for a custom train car specifically for Abraham Lincoln's use to travel down south after the Civil War ended to give speeches about his reconstruction plan. The date Lincoln was to personally review the finished car and give his approval? April 15, 1865 - the day he died!

  • During the Civil War, due to blockades, newspaper editors often had problems obtaining paper to print their newspapers on. The north had all of the paper mills - except for ONE type of paper: Wallpaper. Thus, many issues of Confederate newspapers were actually printed on wallpaper!

    View a condensed version of this presentation Click Here

    2)The Children of Abraham and Mary Lincoln:

    Did you know that Tad was born with a cleft palate - a large hole in the roof of the mouth. Unlike today, in Tad's lifetime, there was no surgery to correct this issue. To feed Tad, Mary, his mother, had to chew his food first, then take it out of her mouth and give to Tad! This way, Tad would be receiving the nutrients required to sustain life. This presentation includes dozens more fascinating facts about Tad that it known to only a few. This presentation is interactive with the students doing short skits and other fun ways to learn history. It is geared towards kids ages 8 to 12. It lasts about 30 minutes.

    To view a condensed version of this presentation Click Here

    3) Michigan's connection to John Wilkes Booth: Two key players in finding John Wilkes Booth were Lafayette and Luther Baker. (They were cousins.) While both were born in New York state, both families moved to Lansing, Michigan when they were very young. They spent the rest of their childhood living there. After the Civil War ended, both moved back to Lansing and puirchased several properties in Ingham and Eaton county Michigan.

    To view a condensed version of this presentation Click Here

    4) Newspapers as primary source material: In this presentation, students are broken up into small groups of 5 or 6. Each student is given reproductions of Lincoln assassination newspapers and are given 10 minutes to read them. Then, the group decides what facts to include in a short paragraph about the assassination. Next, One student from each group reads aloud what their group had written about the assassination. Lastly, the students are directed to open their history textbook and one person reads it aloud to the class. BINGO! Immediately, students get the connection between their history textbook and where the information came from. This presentation is geared towards 5th through 9th grade. It lasts about 30 minutes.

    To view a condensed version of this presentation Click Here

    5) How to Detect Reprints of Newspapers: In my count, there have been over 600 newspaper editions that were reprinted - and 95% of them were produced well over 100-years-old! Thus, to the untrained eye, many people proclaim these specimens as originals because they look old. The presentation includes a reprint detectors kit for everyone in attendance. The workshop lasts about 2 hours. This same workshop was given to staff at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield, Illinois. It lasts about 2 hours and covers 17th through 20th century. I have also gave this workshop at the annual Michigan Historical Society Conference.

    To view a condensed version of this presentation Click Here

    6) Video Conferencing: Rick Brown has been researching Abraham Lincoln for over 48 years. Teachers have their students think of questions about Abraham Lincoln and his family, the homes he lived in, pets, Civil War, etc. The teacher should check the questions to make sure the same question is asked by different students. (Question limit 15.) Then, a video conference can be set up using Skype.

    Traveling Lincoln Assassination Museum

    The owner of this archive has been collecting Lincoln assassination relics for over 48 years. The museum includes original newspapers, broadsides (posters,) CDVs and photos, sheet music, engravings, a diary and more. It has 24 feet of original artifacts!

    To view a condensed video of the museum Click Here





    You may also telephone Rick Brown at 517-455-7796
    (Eastern time zone.)

    Home Base: Lansing, Michigan

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