Lincoln Memorial

Lincoln Memorial

NPS Launches Stunning, Interactive Lincolon Memorial Website

November 19, 2009, 12:24 pm
The National Mall and Memorial Parks announced today, on the 146th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, the launch of a new website called “Lincoln Memorial Interactive.” The new site unites our nation’s heritage and the American experience with cutting-edge technology in unprecedented clarity and ease-of-access.  Stirring podcasts, accessible on the site, capture the unique and powerful personal connections that some of the National Mall’s park rangers have with President Lincoln.

Lincoln Memorial Interactive is the first website of its kind for the National Mall and Memorial Parks and represents a major technological advancement for the National Park Service.  The website allows millions who would not otherwise be able to visit the Memorial to experience President Lincoln’s life, legacy, and his continued impact on the life of every American. The Trust for the National Mall is working with the National Park Service to fund a series of similar websites for all the monuments and memorials on the National Mall.  

Visitors to the website are invited to take a 360-degree, interactive tour of the Memorial, complete with arrows lighting their way to often overlooked features of the Memorial as well as fascinating background information.  Web goers are privy to a rare treat—a view of the Lincoln Memorial free of visitors.  They are able to observe little-seen features of the Memorial like stained glass skylights, the bound sticks or “fasces” on which the marble Lincoln statue is depicted resting his hands, and the murals above the inscription of the Gettysburg Address and Second Inaugural Address.  Never before have guests been able to explore at their leisure with so much freedom and information at their fingertips.

The new website features thirteen stirring video reflections from National Park Rangers all of which are available for download as videos or audio mp3s.  These podcasts address the multifaceted history and influential legacy of President Lincoln.

Ranger Gilbert Lyons, in his reflection “Civil Rights” talks about fighting in the Korean War with an African-American unit.  He shares the painful disconnect he felt as a young father in segregated Washington while reading the words “all men are created equal” on the Memorial. Yet, he recalls the powerful connection that he felt to the site and to President Lincoln.  He discusses seeing Martin Luther King, Jr. speak at the Lincoln Memorial and how happy he is to live to see Lincoln’s legacy reflected in the election of the country’s first African-American President.

East African immigrant and Park Ranger Kawther Elmi recounts growing up in a country torn apart by civil war, “ . . . what could have happened in the United States had Lincoln not stepped in and forcefully united the United States and created equality for all.”  She continues, “ . . . all that I have in the United States as a citizen—I attribute to Abraham Lincoln . . . my hope is that people will take away his wisdom and his healing words will make their way around the world and maybe back to my home.  Lincoln is for everybody.”

The site’s credits feature Bluecadet Interactive (website production), Video Art Productions, Inc. (video production), Lightspeed Media (panoramic photography), and Joshua Cogan Photography (still photography).  To visit the website, see: http://www.nps.gov/linc/index.htm.

The National Park Service preserves unimpaired the natural and cultural resources and values of the National Park System for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations.  The National Park Service cooperates with partners to extend the benefits of natural and cultural resource conservation and outdoor recreation throughout this country and the world.

The Trust for the National Mall is the authorized non-profit partner of the National Park Service dedicated to restoring and improving the National Mall.  The National Mall is the nation’s premier national park suffering from over 30 years of neglect and dwindling resources. The current deferred maintenance budget exceeds $350 million, and the Trust estimates that the park needs an additional $150 million in visitor improvements.  For more information on the Trust for the National Mall, please visit www.nationalmall.org.