Lincoln in Jacksonville Mural
Backstory and Context
This is a depiction of Lincoln’s address to the Phi Alpha Society in this town, Jacksonville, on February 11, 1859. Originally, it was developed for a delivery to the Young Men’s association of Bloomington, Illinois but was rewritten and presented here in Jacksonville. He was asked many times to present this lecture in front of multiple crowds but after his speeches in Springfield, Decatur and Pontiac he decided that he was no longer receiving the reactions he desired from his audience so he stop giving this lecture. His law partner, William H. Herndon claims that Lincoln “began preparation in the usual way by noting down ideas on stray pieces of paper, which found a lodgment inside his hat, and finally brought forth in connected form a lecture.1” Lincoln did not want to seem as though his words were losing meaning by repetition of the same idea so he resolved the issue by turning down requests to speak at other events. The reason he spoke about his topic is because Lincoln himself was very passionate about innovation and he knew it was the path to our future. Lincoln had taken out multiple patents on his own innovation on of which was a tool to “lift boats over shoals” and although it was never constructed you can see his dedication to this topic of innovation.
This mural was painted by multiple artists, but primarily by Andy and Lori Goretski. Andy Goretski is still a muralist that works at Custom Murals and recently installed signages for the study rooms in a library in Wisconsin.
1 “Lecture on Discoveries and Inventions.” Edited by Roy P Basler, Abraham Lincoln's Second
Lecture on Discoveries and Inventions, Abraham Lincoln Online,