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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 22, 2000

Governor Announces State Sponsorship for PBS Series on Lincoln

SPRINGFIELD -- Governor George H. Ryan today announced that Illinois is sponsoring the upcoming six hour PBS series "A House Divided: Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln."

Ryan said the sponsorship provides Illinois with an excellent opportunity to promote tourism and enhance recognition of the need for the Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield.

"Abraham Lincoln is known around the world as one of America's greatest presidents," Ryan said. "By sponsoring this PBS series on Lincoln's marriage, Illinois will remind viewers here and abroad that visiting our great state is the best way to truly experience his life and times."

The series, produced by Emmy award-winning documentarian David Grubin, is scheduled to debut with the first of three two-hour segments on Monday, February 12, 2001. The television series is expected to attract 20 million viewers.

The Illinois Department of Commerce and Community Affairs (DCCA) provided a total of $750,000 in tourism grants to PBS over fiscal years 1999, 2000, and 2001 for sponsorship rights to the series. The sponsorship includes on-air credits, credit on the video packaging, PBS Website links, and a business reply card in the home video packaging, which will be used to promote Illinois tourism opportunities.

"Tourism is big business in Illinois and DCCA is constantly looking for new ways to get the word out on the exciting things to see and do here," DCCA Director Pam McDonough said.

Today's announcement coincides with the 138th anniversary of the date that Lincoln announced to his cabinet his decision to issue the Emancipation Proclamation. The document that freed the slaves in the South took effect on Jan. 1, 1863. Ryan noted that a copy of the Emancipation Proclamation signed by Lincoln is stored in the vault of the Old State Capitol and would be on public display in the new Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum.

"It's critical that we get the Lincoln Presidential Library built so that future generations can gain a full understanding of the sacrifices Lincoln made and the leadership he showed during America's most trying hour," Ryan added.



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