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Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Lincoln's Summer Cottage - Lincoln Died 150 Years Ago Today

Lincoln wrote the Emancipation Proclamation here.

Lincoln used to ride his horse to the White House every morning. He last visited here on April 13th before he died. He was shot April 14th - and died April 15th. 150 year ago today.

A regiment of troops was stationed here to guard the president during the war. 

This is the Old Soldiers Home today.

Abraham Lincoln died 150 years ago today. During the summers - the Lincoln's did not live in the White House. After Willie died from Typhoid and bad drinking water - Mary decided that they would live at the old Soldiers' Home on a hill 3 miles north of the White House. 

There is an "cottage" there overlooking the city. In the days before air conditioning - the elevation and breezes provided relief from the sweltering river basin. The President would commute on his horse down the mountain every day to the White House. His family could stay away from the DC Grind. 

Today the cottage is open to the public on an hourly tour for $15. The tours are limited to 20 people per hour. Keith and I had the 3 PM tour today. 

The Old Soldiers Home still exists. There are about 1000 retired soldiers there - all have been in the service at least 20 years and have injured in battle. The first national cemetery in on the premises and Lincoln could look out the window to see about 40 civil war soldiers buried a week. When the cemetery filled - the overflow started a new cemetery across the river called Arlington. 

4 other presidents used the cottage as their summer home. Later Camp David was built about 50 miles north of town. President Eisenhower used to drive there - but now the presidents use helicopters. 

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