Site Closed

Ford’s Theatre Society and the National Park Service closed the historic site starting March 14. That closure currently extends through May 17. Our production of “Guys and Dolls” has been postponed to spring 2021.

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Interview with Historian Kate Masur about the book "They Knew Lincoln"

7 Min Read

"They Knew Lincoln" by John E. Washington’s recounts the complex relationship between Lincoln and Washington’s African-American community. Kate Masur, a professor of history at Northwestern University, facilitated the reissue of the book for the first time since the original run in 1942. This edition includes a new introduction by Masur on John E. Washington and the Washington, D.C., he knew. Here, she offers a preview.

Adding Historical Voices to the Ford's Theatre Site: Prototyping Sprint 1, Round 2

12 min Read

On December 19, 2017, visitors to the Ford’s campus heard from people who were witnesses to the Lincoln assassination events of 1865. Visitors found four iPads on music stands around the campus featuring audio of our staff members reading first-person accounts from five people from the time. Read about our second round of ideas testing for our latest prototyping project.

Presenting Historical Fiction at Historic Ford's Theatre

4.5 min. Read

At Ford’s Theatre, we often face an interesting dilemma when presenting plays and musicals that have ties to history. Because Ford’s is inextricably tied to our national history with the assassination of Abraham Lincoln on April 14, 1865, many in expect any aspect of American history portrayed on our stage to be 100 percent truthful to the facts. Patrick Pearson discusses.

Bringing Mary Lincoln to Life at Ford’s Theatre

4 Min Read

Since 2000, many visitors to Ford’s Theatre have stepped back in time with National Park Service volunteer Liz Hogan, who portrays First Lady Mary Lincoln and, sometimes, Mary Lincoln’s confidante Elizabeth Dixon. Hogan seeks to counter some of the many pervasive myths about Lincoln’s First Lady. Learn about how Hogan  prepared for this historical role and how visitors react.

Taking It to the Streets: Prototyping Sprint 1, Round 1

13 min. Read

On a semi-cold Tuesday, Ford’s Theatre staff and evaluator Kate Haley Goldman spent the day on the street between the Petersen House and Ford’s Theatre, asking visitors for their opinions of two on-site prototypes that might enhance the visitor’s understanding of the Lincoln assassination and its aftermath. Read on to see what we learned from that testing.