LEWISBORO, N.Y. -- Students at two of Katonah-Lewisboro's elementary schools got visits from Abraham Lincoln reenactor Lou Del Bianco this past week, according to Putnam/Northern Westchester BOCES, which arrange the trips through its Arts in Education program.
Del Bianco, sporting the 16th president's famous stovepipe hat and beard, recited historical experiences for kids at Katonah Elementary School and Meadow Pond Elementary School last week.
BOCES, in its announcement, included some of Del Bianco's reenactment quotes and responses from kids.
“I was born on the prairie. My family was dirt poor and life was hard,” the impersonator said in conveying Lincoln's childhood. “My parents were illiterate. My mother Nancy wanted me to have an education, but I only went to school for eleven months in my whole life. I taught myself to read and write. I taught myself law. I became a legislator and the sixteenth President of the United States of America.”
“Because I was so poor, I had to persevere,” he added. “What does persevere mean?”
A second-grader, BOCES noted, encouraged him to do so.
“Don’t give up,” the student said.
Del Bianco, as Lincoln, told students about the Civil War, including his famous Gettysburg Address. He also recalled how a young Lincoln, then just 21, witnessed his first slave auction in New Orleans.
One student asked how being president since Lincoln's time has changed, BOCES noted.
“I have never been asked that question before!” Del Bianco was quoted as saying. “I don’t know how the Oval Office has changed since the 1860s. I will look that up!”
The student also wanted to look it up, BOCES said.