FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                Date: February 26, 2003

 Contact: Rodd Whelpley, 206-6643


Lincoln Center at UIS publishes new children’s book


SPRINGFIELD – What would the world have been like without Abraham Lincoln? Fourteen young authors explore tThat question is explored in Mr. Lincoln and the Time Train, a new children’s book written by a group of 14 young authors and published February 12 by the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Center for Governmental Studies at the University of Illinois at Springfield. The children will be on hand to sign copies of their book from noon to 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 4, at the Old State Capitol in downtown Springfield.

 Mr. Lincoln and the Time Train was commissioned and published by the Center to commemorate the dedication of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library last fall. The authors, most of whom are from Springfield and nearby communities, were all between the ages of 7 and 10 when they wrote the story.

The Center, along with the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency and WeWrite Corporation, are co-sponsoring the book launching, which will include an appearance by Lincoln interpreter Fritz Klein, who assisted the children as they created the story, plus a short demonstration of the process by which the book was written. The audience will include the authors’ classmates and other students from local elementary schools.

The Center and WeWrite Corporation chose a diverse group of volunteer writers with a Springfield connection to participate in a writing workshop held in mid-November in conjunction with the library dedication. Klein attended the workshop in character as Lincoln,

talking to the children and offering some insight into Lincoln’s life. The children then brainstormed the story as Chicago artist Chuck Goll sketched their ideas.



The book that resulted tells how President Lincoln falls asleep on the train heading to Gettysburg and wakes up in modern-day Springfield, Illinois. Three smart kids – Ryan, Jennifer, and Angela – realize the importance of Lincoln’s role in history and see how different their lives might be without his influence. The trio sets out to help Lincoln get back to his own time and fulfill his destiny. Fido, Mr. Lincoln’s favorite dog,has accompanied his master through time and  has accompanied his master through time and his Fido Ddigs Ddeeper” sidebars to help readers understand various historical terms and facts along the way.

The authors and the schools they attend are: Erika Brodland and Sierra Brodland (Lake Shore Elementary, Moorsville, North Carolina); Tyler Cameron (New Berlin Elementary); Emma Frederick (Iles Elementary); Kamaria Gage (Iles Elementary); Isiah Hale (Laketown Elementary); Alyssa Henson (Laketown Elementary); Lonnie Lucas (Laketown Elementary); Glen Morrison (Laketown Elementary); Joseph Stowell (New Berlin Elementary); Samuel Stowell (Loami Elementary); Linna Vo and Mily Vo (Laketown Elementary); and Matthew Wilde (Laketown Elementary).

More than 7,000 copies of the book will be donated to libraries, schools, and literacy programs nationwide to celebrate the Center’s new initiative to make Illinois a model for literacy in America.

WeWrite Corporation, founded in 1993, is committed to promoting literacy by offering books incorporating the insights and perspectives of children. The company will make a limited number of copies of Mr. Lincoln and the Time Train available to the general public. Copies are $8.95 each and can be ordered by calling (800) 295-9037.


Mr. Lincoln and the Time Train

60 pages


ISBN 0-938943-21-9