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Princeton Public Library will host program on Mary Todd Lincoln on Thursday

PRINCETON — Mary Todd Lincoln lived a life filled with triumphs and tragedies, but few people know her story.

Actress and librarian Laura F. Keyes has been portraying Mrs. Lincoln since 2008 and she will share both her talents and the fruits of her research as she portrays “Mrs. Lincoln in Springfield” at the Princeton Public Library at 6:30 p.m. Thursday.

Set in 1847, this program shows a rarely-seen side of Mrs. Lincoln, that of a young wife and mother trying to keep her household in order while her husband travels often for his job. The presentation focuses on the Lincolns’ first trip to Washington City, and is set on Oct. 15, 1847, right before Mr. Lincoln begins his term in the House of Representatives.

Keyes graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a master’s degree in library studies and is currently the library director at the Illinois Institute of Art in Schaumburg. Her repertoire as Mary Todd Lincoln includes programs set in 1862, 1865 and an 1868 program that is still “in the works.” She enjoys researching literary symbolism and is under contract to write a book on that subject. In her non-existent spare time, she is a wonderful baker and accomplished vocalist. Patrons who wish to learn a bit more about Laura Keyes and her work can visit her website at www.laurafkeyes.com.

The library is at 698 E. Peru St. in Princeton. All programs at the library are free and open to all. For more information, call 815-875-1331 or go to www.theprincetonlibrary.org.

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