Lincoln's Springfield

6 figures stand in front of a blue background. Text reads Lincoln's Springfield
Lincoln's Springfield is a new exhibit located in the Corneau House.


The legacy of Springfield includes more characters than just the Lincoln family. Springfield’s story is woven together by individuals overcoming hardships, making a life for themselves, and coming together to help. The Corneau House Exhibit explores the lives of six of those individuals and the impact they made on their community through graphic narratives.

This self guided exhibit is open daily from 9:00 AM - 4:30 PM in the Corneau house, across from the Lincoln home.
An African American man wearing a cowboy hat. Text reads Jameson Jenkins: In pursuit of progress.


Jameson Jenkins lived down the street from the Lincoln family and worked as a drayman. Jenkins not only carried cargo, but he risked his own personal safety to help freedom seekers escaping slavery on their journey north on the Underground Railroad.
A white man with brown hair. Text reads "Francis Springer: A man on a journey"


Francis Springer lived in Lincoln’s neighborhood. His house was used as both a school and a church, becoming an important place in the community. When the Civil War broke out, Springer joins the Union Army and was named a Chaplin. During the war he provides comfort, aid and medical assistance to Union soldiers. Eventually, Springer made his way to Fort Smith, Arkansas to help war refugees make a new life for themselves.
A woman with dark hair. Text reads Charlotte Rodriguis de Souza: Part of the Fabric


Charlotte De Souza, a religious refugee, was born in Portugal and moved to Springfield at the age of six. Years later she worked for the Lincolns during the summer of 1860 as a seamstress. While their time together was brief, De Souza connected with the Lincoln family and remembered the president fondly.
An african american woman with text reading "Mariah Vance: The Power of Compassion"


Mariah Vance was a free African American woman who worked for the Lincolns and forged a long-lasting bond with the Lincoln Family. So much so, that over 30 years later, Robert Todd Lincoln reconnected with her and began sending monthly stipend checks over thirty years after she worked for the Lincoln family.
An african american man. Text treads "William Donnegan: An enduring legacy"


William Donnegan was a free African American who worked as a shoe cobbler in Springfield. Additionally, he served as a conductor on the Underground Railroad helping people escape slavery. Using his courage and creativity, Donnegan assisted freedom seekers’ journey north. Over 50 years later, a man who should have been remembered as a hero, was a victim of the 1908 race riot in Springfield.
a white man with a beard. Text reads, "Henry Carrigan: A Temporary Stay"


Henry Carrigan was one of many Irish immigrants who moved here to Springfield to make a new life for themselves. Carrigan just so happened to end up living next door to Abraham Lincoln. While Lincoln and Carrigan disagreed politically, during the Civil War Carrigan helped to recruit soldiers for the Union.

Last updated: February 14, 2024

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413 S. 8th Street
Springfield, IL 62701


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