Life

can 20

C E L E B R AT I N G T H E P E O P L E O F T H E F I N G E R L A K E S

LAKE LIFE
• PEOPLE •

Monday: People

A6

RUARY 9, 2009 •

The Citizen, Auburn, New York

• PORT BYRON •
p o ,

Lincoln artifact has local ties
Collection contains Bible given Lincoln by Amos King of Port Byron
With the recent elections and the upcoming 200th anniversar y of his bir th, President Abraham Lincoln is back in the forefront of the American people. This increased awareness also brings exciting news for the community of Por t Byron. Hildene, the LinDawn coln Family Home, Roe is located in Manchester, Vt. It was built as the summer home of Rober t Todd Lincoln, the only child of Abraham and Mar y Todd Lincoln to sur vive to adulthood. The 412-acre estate includes a 1905 Georgian Revival mansion and was home to only Lincoln descendants until 1975. The non-profit Friends of Hildene purchased the estate in 1978 and began the long process of restoration. In 2004, Hildene began a permanent display of Lincoln artifacts titled “The Personal Abraham Lincoln.” One of these artifacts came from Port Byron. Brian Knight, curator at Hildene, states that the collection contains a Bible that was presented to Abraham Lincoln in 1861 by Amos S. King, of Port Byron and provides the following transcription: “The donor of this humble gift having read the farewell remarks of the President elect on his departure from his home in the West, to take upon himself the high responsibility of the most important task of this great people in which speech he desired his friends to pray for him that he might have divine assistance in the execution of that trust therefore the donor begs leave to present to his Excellency, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States of America, this bible as a small token of the high esteem and kind regard in which the giver holds the honored recipient. To his Excellency, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States. Amos S. King, Port Byron, Cayuga County, NY, March 4, 1861” The history of the King Bible that was presented to Lincoln is detailed by Mr. Knight as follows: “The Bible stayed in the Lincoln family after the death of Abraham Lincoln. It was part of Robert Todd Lincoln’s library here at Hildene. Robert built Hildene as a summer home in 1903, moved in 1905, and used the

Honest Abe Quiz
1. What was the name of the Lincoln family dog? A. Lee B. Kent C. Fido D. Charlie 2. Grace Bedell, an 11-year-old girl, suggested Lincoln grow a beard to become president. A. true B. false 3. When was Lincoln born? A. April 15, 1865 B. Nov. 19, 1864 C. April 21, 1836 D. Feb. 12, 1809
Photo courtesy of Hildene,the Lincoln Family Home, Manchester, Vt.

s

-

m -

m-

This Bible was gifted to Abraham Lincoln in 1861 by Amos S. King of Port Byron. The letter from Amos S. King to Abraham Lincoln is on display with other Lincoln artifacts in the exhibit “The Personal Abraham Lincoln,” at Hildene, the f ormer Lincoln Family Home, in Manchester, Vt.
Photo courtesy of Hildene, the Lincoln Family Home, Manchester, Vt.

y

4. How tall was Lincoln? A. 5’4” B. 6’4” C. 5’11” D. 5’8” 5. What did Lincoln carry in his stovepipe hat? A. keys, wallet, watch B. crossword puzzles C. letters, bills and notes D. shopping lists
— Source: Quiz courtesy of the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission

nt

y,

s e d

l

-

e -

home until his death in 1926. His wife lived in the home until her death in 1937 and then his daughter until 1938. It was passed down eventually to Peggy Beckwith, Abraham Lincoln’s great-granddaughter. Peggy lived at Hildene, full time, from 1939 until her death in 1975. The Bible was part of the library when our organization began giving tours in 1978.” In researching Amos King, it was

with the descendants from the siblings of Amos King. If you are a descendant of Richard and Laney Scott King, please e-mail me or Mr. Brian Knight, curator at Hildene-the Lincoln Family Home, at brian@hildene.org. Having such a wonderful artifact is a huge honor for Port Byron as well as Cayuga County. It is especially meaningful as the Bible was gifted to Lincoln from our hometown at the start of his presidency. We also shared Lincoln’s final journey when his funeral train and escort passed through Port Byron at approximately 12:40 a.m. Thursday, April 27, 1865. discovered that he was a boatman and then a farmer. We look forward to hearing from However, it appears that he did not the descendants of Richard and have any surviving descendants. I did Laney Scott King, no matter how far find a young girl named Jennie living away you may live, please participate. in his household in 1860. However, she no longer appeared in subseDawn Roe is historian for the village quent census readings. The 1900 of Port Byron. She can be reached at census indicates that they had no 776-8446 or e-mail beatatune@tds.net children. There were also no children mentioned in their obituaries. Therefore, we are seeking contact
(Answers to Quiz: 1. C; 2. A; 3. D; 4. B; 5. C)