Civil War heritage group will pay tribute to Lincoln at May 5 dinner

An organization dedicated to preserving the memory of the Union soldiers of the Civil War will pay tribute to those soldiers' commander-in-chief, Abraham Lincoln, with a dinner on May 5.

The event is being staged in honor of the 200th birth year of Lincoln, who was born Feb. 12, 1809.

Lincoln's birth was marked by a number of celebrations in February, but "we decided instead of trying to compete with the other big parties, we'd do it now," says Gib Young, of Huntington, commander of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War Champion Hill Camp 17.

"This is not a fundraiser," Young says. "This is done to honor Mr. Lincoln who, after all, was a Hoosier - the best part of him."

Lincoln lived in Indiana from 1816 to 1830, moving to the state at age 7 and remaining a Hoosier until he turned 21.

The event will be held in the LaFontaine Center ballroom, with doors opening at 6 p.m. and a dinner served at 6:30 p.m. The dinner, catered by Johnny Drive-In, will offer a choice of ham or chicken main dishes.

Archie Lintz, of Huntington, will present a short tribute to Lincoln. Lintz is retired from teaching elementary school in Columbia City and has done considerable research on Lincoln, Young says.

The Huntington North High School Varsity Singers will present a musical tribute to Lincoln, performing songs of the period and including what is believed to be Lincoln's favorite song - "Just Twenty Years Ago."

"It was a typical sentimental song of the period," Young says. "They were big into sentimental, maudlin things."

Tickets for the Lincoln tribute event may be purchased by calling Young at 356-1000 or Paul Kiningham at 672-9410. A limited number of tickets are available.

The SUVCW membership includes both those who can trace their lineage to an ancestor who fought in the Civil War or those who just want to honor their memory.

"The appeal of honoring the ‘boys in blue' still means something to them," Young explains.