Lincoln Presidential Foundation Secures National Park Foundation Grant to Enhance Inclusive Access at Lincoln Home’s New Youth Exhibit


Springfield, IL (March 13, 2024) - The Lincoln Presidential Foundation (“Foundation”) has received a grant from the National Park Foundation (NPF)’s ParkVentures program to bolster the accessibility of a new youth exhibit at the Lincoln Home National Historic Site (“Lincoln Home”).

The exhibit, “Lincoln’s Springfield,” was created by the Foundation and Lincoln Home to highlight the diversity and resilience of Abraham Lincoln’s community through the diverse life stories of six individuals. These stories not only illustrate how President Lincoln's perspective on the importance of the American experiment was shaped by his community, but they also serve as a potent reminder of the individual's potential to contribute to society, regardless of their individual circumstances. Lincoln’s Springfield marks the first exhibit designed for a youth audience (specifically, 10–14-year-olds) in the park’s 50-plus-year history. The exhibit's grand opening was held in February.

The NPF ParkVentures grant provides resources for the Foundation and Lincoln Home NHS to create complementary pre-and-post-visit materials, audience evaluation, and staff training with collaborating consultants to bolster inclusive access for all students. Fieldtrip scholarships are also offered for students served by those organizations to experience the exhibit for themselves. Collaborators include:

  • The Chicago Lighthouse: an internationally renowned organization serving individuals with disabilities.
  • Hope: offers services for individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities.
  • Central Illinois Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired (CICBVI) has a 68-year history of advocating for the rights of individuals with visual impairments.
  • Beardstown School District Migrant Education and Language Acquisition Program: serves students from diverse linguistic backgrounds, including English Language Learners.

“Our Foundation’s mission to share the story of Abraham Lincoln’s life, legacy, and leadership with all people drives our commitment to enhancing accessibility and inclusion with our partners,” said Erin Carlson Mast, Lincoln Presidential Foundation’s President & CEO. “We appreciate the support of the National Park Foundation through the ParkVentures grant program, which provides essential resources for this collaborative project.”

The National Park Foundation’s ParkVentures program awards grants to equity-focused outdoor leaders and organizations for projects and activities that promote access, eliminate barriers, and offer positive, memorable experiences to engage individuals and communities that have historically been excluded from national parks and outdoor recreation. The program’s goal is to ultimately help people create and strengthen life-long relationships with national parks.

About the Lincoln Presidential Foundation
Established in 2000, the Lincoln Presidential Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit public charity headquartered in Illinois. It is the only national foundation focused on increasing access to history, educational programs, exhibits, and sites highlighting the life and legacy of Abraham Lincoln. The Foundation does its work in cooperation and partnership with others locally, nationally, and globally. Its vision is a world where freedom and democracy flourish, inspired by the life and work of Abraham Lincoln. Learn more at

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Media Contact:
Grace DuFour
(301) 337-0708