The Dean and Barbara White Family Foundation was to announce a $1 million challenge grant to the Lincoln Collection Campaign during a news conference today at the Allen County Public Library's Rare Books and Manuscript Department.
To receive the full grant, the campaign, run by the Friends of the Lincoln Collection of Indiana and the Indiana State Museum Foundation, must raise $1 million to match it by Oct. 26. The main library now houses the Lincoln Financial Collection of documents, photographs and research materials of President Abraham Lincoln that were formerly part of Fort Wayne's Lincoln Museum, which closed in June 2008. Lincoln Financial Foundation chose the library to house the written materials from the collection. The 3-D artifacts are at the Indiana State Museum in Indianapolis.
“The White Foundation's gift and the funds contributed by those who help us meet the challenge will play an essential role in preserving this landmark collection representing the life, career and impact of this most important Hoosier statesman,” said Indiana State Museum President and CEO Thomas A. King in a statement. “Together, our efforts will ensure that this collection is available to people around the world and that it will remain so for generations.”
According to the statement, the campaign has raised $7.75 million so far. Another $2.5 million to $3 million is needed to complete the digitization of the collection, create a website to be launched in 2011, develop new exhibitions and provide for the long-term care of the collection through an endowment fund.
“We are grateful to the Dean and Barbara White Family Foundation for their generous gift and for their dedication to Indiana's heritage,” said Ian Rolland, co-chair of the Lincoln fundraising campaign, in the statement. “This challenge grant is a milestone in the campaign that will inspire others around the state and bring us within sight of our goal.”