Monday, May 21, 2012 | Latest audio lessons → VOA Learning English
A New Education Center at Theater Where Lincoln Was Shot
Ford's Theatre in Washington has opened a new education center. It tells about President Abraham Lincoln, who was shot in the theater just after the civil war ended. The new center has a 10-meter-high tower of 7,000 books about the president. Tracey Avant says there are more books about Abraham Lincoln than about any other American.
TRACEY AVANT: "He's just continued to be fascinating, and people throughout every generation seem to want to redefine who Abraham Lincoln is to them."
The center has a re-creation of the train car that carried Mr. Lincoln's body. There also is a re-creation of the building where John Wilkes Booth -- the president's killer -- was himself shot and killed.
Charlie Doer likes the computerized exhibits.
CHARLIE DOER: "I think it's pretty cool, pretty high tech for Abraham Lincoln." The center was opened to answer questions about the president.
TRACEY AVANT: "And he's still very relevant to us today, so we want people to walk away having a better understanding of what it was about Abraham Lincoln that made him relevant, makes him relevant today and has made him such a popular president."
The civil war began after 11 southern states split from the north over the rights of states, including slavery. The center's Tracy Avant says some people questioned President Lincoln's actions, but he was respected.
TRACEY AVANT: "It has a lot to do with his leadership style, and his personality, the things that he championed. The fact that he had an ability to relate to the common person because he had come from, you know, humble roots himself."
The center shows other American presidents and world leaders who have used the words of President Lincoln.
TRACEY AVANT: "His writing encompassed really big ideas, championed important issues, but he wrote in a very eloquent but very simple style which was not really the tradition at the time."
The center has created a video showing Americans using the words of President Lincoln. I'm Steve Ember.