Abraham Lincoln’s Role in Personal Freedom Focus of Lawrence University Address

APPLETON, WIS. — Orville Vernon Burton, noted scholar of the Civil War and the American South, discusses Abraham Lincoln’s most profound accomplishment in the second address of Lawrence University’s two-part Robert S. French Lectures on the Civil War Era.

Burton presents “The Age of Lincoln” Monday, Oct. 12 at 4:30 p.m. in the Warch Campus Center cinema. The event is free and open to the public.

Orville%20Vernon%20Burton_web.jpgWhile Abraham Lincoln is narrowly identified as the “Civil War president,” Burton argues Lincoln actually defined the entire second half of 19th-century American history by setting in motion the forces that made individual freedom America’s preeminent value. Burton will examine the role Lincoln’s Southern roots played in conducting a civil war that turned freedom into a personal right protected by the rule of law and placed that concept at the center of American identity.

Burton, the Distinguished Professor of Southern History and Culture at Coastal Carolina University and Professor Emeritus of History at the University of Illinois, is author or editor of 14 books, including the 2007 Pulitzer Prize-nominated “The Age of Lincoln.” His 1985 book, “In My Father’s House are Many Mansions: Family and Community in Edgefield, South Carolina,” also was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.

Burton’s scholarship includes race relations, politics, religion and the intersection of humanities and social science. He teaching and scholarship has been widely honored, including the 2004 American Historical Association’s Eugene Asher Distinguished Teaching Prize and the 1999 U.S. Research and Doctoral University Professor of the Year Award, presented by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education.

The French Lectures on the Civil War Era are supported by the Wisconsin Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission, the Lawrence University Excellence in History Fund and the Lawrence history department.