Ford’s Theatre National Historic Site (Museum, Theatre, Petersen House) and the Center for Education and Leadership will be closed to the public on Friday, May 22, and Sunday, May 31. In addition, Tuesday, May 26 – Saturday, May 30, the museum and theatre will be closed to the public, while the Petersen House and Center for Education and Leadership will remain open.

Center for Education and Leadership

Rediscover the American president against whom all others are measured.

In the Center for Education and Leadership, visitors explore the lasting effect Abraham Lincoln’s presidency—and its untimely end—have had on our country.

The Center is located at 514 10th Street, NW, across the street from the theatre and adjacent to the Petersen House, where Lincoln died.

The Center Includes Four Public Floors:

john wilks boothAftermath Gallery: Trace the immediate aftermath of Lincoln’s assassination. Follow the route of the Lincoln Funeral Train from Washington, D.C., to Springfield, IL. Learn about the hunt for John Wilkes Booth, and see a recreation of the Virginia tobacco barn where he was ultimately captured and killed. Read about the fates of the other conspirators.


Lincoln Legacy Legacy Gallery: Explore the evolving legacy of Lincoln and how he has been memorialized around the world. Watch a video on the Lincoln memorial and its importance in the civil rights movement. Learn how presidents from both sides of the aisle have been inspired by Lincoln’s words and ideas. View artifacts that show Lincoln’s evolution as a pop culture icon. See a video installation remixing Lincoln’s famous speeches that shows how his ideas still resonate today.

lincoln exhibitLeadership Gallery: Ford’s Theatre hosts special exhibitions in this gallery space. From July 26, 2014, to January 1, 2015, the gallery will feature Lincoln and Leadership. This exhibition explores the qualities of good leadership through the lens of some of Abraham Lincoln’s key leadership principles and examines why Lincoln has remained relevant into the 21st century.


A winding staircase and 34-foot tower of books about Lincoln, symbolizing that the last word about this great man will never be written.




The Center also features two floors of education studios to house post-visit workshops, after-school programs and teacher professional development, and a distance-learning lab outfitted with state-of-the-art technology, enabling Ford’s to engage students and teachers nationwide and around the world.

The Center is the latest chapter in the continuing historic transformation of Ford’s Theatre and Tenth Street into a campus that captures Lincoln's spirit and the American imagination. In February 2009, a restored and renovated theatre reopened, featuring new seats, improved accessibility, upgraded amenities and new staging systems.

In July 2009, a reimagined museum opened, with interactive exhibits that paint a social and political picture of Washington, D.C., and the United States during the 1860s.

With the opening of the Center, Ford’s Theatre can give visitors a comprehensive perspective of the theatre’s history and Lincoln’s life and legacy.

Plan  a Visit

Explore exhibits and features of the Center for Education and Leadership:

Center for Education and Leadership Lincoln Book tower
Lincoln Book Tower

Center for Education and Leadership Videos
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Ford's Theatre Center for Education and Leadership
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Floor MapDownload Map

ResourcesRecommended Reads

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