$50,869 gift presented to Lincoln Library
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Media personality, author and political commentator Glenn Beck has helped to ensure that one-of-a-kind Lincoln artifacts remain accessible to visitors at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum.
The library’s executive director, Alan Lowe, announced in December that Beck’s charity, Mercury One, had made a gift of $50,869 to the library and museum.
“We are extraordinarily grateful for the generosity of Glenn, his listeners and Mercury One donors,” Lowe said.
“Glenn contacted us as soon as he heard of our challenge and asked how he could help. The donation from Mercury One, as well as Glenn’s continued call for his audience to protect Lincoln’s legacy, is inspiring.”
“We believe in what Alan and his amazing team are building and preserving,” Beck said.
“Abraham Lincoln’s mission didn’t end in the 1860s. His words challenge us yet today, to do the hard things, and help free those in chains and heal the wounds.
“Slavery is still a blight on humanity all over the world including the United States. My listeners also believe in his mission and his goal of ‘healing the wounds’ of our nation ‘with malice toward none and charity for all.’ That line is, in fact, the mission statement I, coincidentally, gave to my Mercury One charity organization years ago. It is part of the fabric of who we are.
“Abraham Lincoln is just as relevant and important as he was in 1860, and we are honored to help preserve and amplify his voice.”
Some artifacts and documents housed at the Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum are actually owned by a private organization, the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation.
The foundation owes about $9.2 million on the collection, known as the Taper Collection, and has warned that it may have to sell items if it cannot raise money soon to pay the remainder of the foundation’s debt.
That means private owners could snap up parts of the collection, which includes the blood-stained gloves Lincoln was carrying at Ford’s Theatre, the oldest surviving sample of Lincoln’s handwriting, his presidential seal and much more.
“When I heard about the museum and the help they needed last summer, we started a ‘5 4 Lincoln’ fundraiser,” Beck said.
“Thousands of my listeners have signed up to donate $5 a month to help grow the library and preserve these treasures. I wish we could do it all, but we are excited to play any role in helping. Join us at 54Lincoln.com. We are committed through the long haul.”
Lowe was going to give Mercury One’s donation to the foundation so it can be put toward the debt.
The foundation had to borrow $23 million when it bought the Taper Collection 11 years ago. Despite significant progress in paying the principal and interest, the foundation still owed $9.2 million as of the end of 2018.
The bank that holds the loan says the debt must be paid by October 2019.