Tuesday, April 5, 2011

UIS hosts Lincoln and the Secession Crisis Reconsidered: A Symposium

The University of Illinois Springfield will host Lincoln and the Secession Crisis Reconsidered: A Symposium on Saturday, April 9, 2011 from 9:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. in Brookens Auditorium, which is located in the lower level of Brookens Library. This event is free and open to the public.

The symposium is being organized by Michael Burlingame, holder of the Chancellor Naomi B. Lynn Distinguished Chair in Lincoln Studies at UIS. The event will feature five renowned scholars from around the country.

When the Republican Party stunned the nation and nominated Abraham Lincoln, largely unknown in the East, to run for the presidency, it pushed Illinois to the center of the sectional crisis. Lincoln won the nomination in part because he lacked the sworn enemies of well-known politicians such as New York's William Seward and Pennsylvania's Simon Cameron. In the months following Lincoln's election, southern states seceded from the Union (From: http://dig.lib.niu.edu/civilwar/narrative1.html).

Schedule of Speakers:

• 9:45-10:30 a.m. – Paul Finkelman, “The Roots of the Secession Crisis”

Paul Finkelman, the President William McKinley Distinguished Professor of Law and Public Policy at the Albany Law School, specializes in American legal history, race and the law. He is the author of more than 100 scholarly articles and more than 20 books, including The Political Lincoln: An Encyclopedia (co-edited with Martin J. Hershock, 2009) and Lincoln and the Preconditions for Emancipation: The Moral Grandeur of a Bill of Lading, in Lincoln’s Proclamation: Race, Place, and the Paradoxes of Emancipation (ed. William A. Blair and Karen Fisher Younger, 2009), pp. 13-44.

• 10:30-11:45 a.m. - Mark J. Stegmaier, “A Young Washington Correspondent in the Secession Crisis: Henry Adams”

Mark J. Stegmaier, Professor of History at Cameron University in Lawton, Oklahoma, is the author of Texas, New Mexico, and the Compromise of 1850: Boundary Dispute and Sectional Crisis (1996). He has edited Henry Adams’s anonymous journalism written during the secession crisis (forthcoming) and is at work on a book-length study of Congress during that crisis, as well as a book-length study of the South's role in the development and passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854.

• 12:15-1:00 p.m. - Daniel W. Crofts, “William Henry Hurlbert as Imaginary Secession Crisis Diarist”

Daniel W. Crofts, professor of history at the College of New Jersey, is a leading authority on the secession crisis. His first book, Reluctant Confederates: Upper South Unionists in the Secession Crisis (1989), explored the social and economic foundations of politics and the role played by partisanship in making North-South disagreements more insoluble and explosive. He has edited and provided a new introduction for David M. Potter’s classic study of Lincoln and His Party in the Secession Crisis. Last year Professor Crofts published A Secession Crisis Enigma: William Henry Hurlbert and The Diary of a Public Man, on which his presentation is based.

• 2:00-2:45 p.m. - Russell McClintock, “Using After-the-Fact Secession Crisis Reminiscences”

Russell McClintock, who earned his Ph.D. in history from Clark University, received the Hay-Nicolay Dissertation Prize, awarded jointly by the Abraham Lincoln Institute and Abraham Lincoln Association. That dissertation was published as Lincoln and the Decision for War: The Northern Response to Secession, which the History Book Club deemed the best Civil War book of 2008. He teaches history at St. John's High School in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts, and is currently working a biography of Stephen A. Douglas.

• 2:45-3:30 p.m. - Michael Burlingame, “Using After-the-Fact Secession Crisis Reminiscences, A Response”

Michael Burlingame, holder of the Chancellor Naomi B. Lynn Distinguished Chair in Lincoln Studies at UIS, is the author of Abraham Lincoln: A Life (2008) and The Inner World of Abraham Lincoln (1994). His book Lincoln and the Civil War will be released in September. He has also edited several volumes of Lincoln primary source materials, including At Lincoln’s Side: John Hay’s Civil War Correspondence and Selected Writings.

• 3:30-4:30 p.m. - Panel of participants, questions and comments from the floor

For more information on the symposium, contact Michael Burlingame at 217/206-7364 or email mburl2@uis.edu.

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