The 11th Hour

Written by Dale Ogden, chief curator of cultural history at the Indiana State Museum

I haven’t had a chance to blog for the past few weeks; not because there hasn’t been anything to say, just the opposite — we’re in full hyper-drive. I appreciate Traci covering for me in the blogosphere.

Except for last minute tweaks, the script is finished and ready to go to the printer. Most of our exhibit labels are brief and basic. This is the first time I’ve really been able to expound. Thanks to the Library of Congress producing about 35,000 words for their show, I’ve been able to write 16,000 for ours. After 25 years, I can finally say, “I’ve said just about everything I have to say on this subject … for now.” Thanks to Susannah for editing me. Any halfway decent writer will tell you that, next to their spouse, their editor is the most important person in their life. If I wasn’t already happily married, I’d ask S.K. tomorrow. She may not have saved my life, but she at least salvaged my reputation.

New media production is going great. NASCAR’s Tony Stewart, WNBA star Tamika Catchings, PBS commentator Tavis Smiley and astronaut David Wolf are just a few of the Hoosiers who’ve cut videos for our Lincoln trivia kiosk. We have additional celebs lined up, just working on schedules. We had to move the kiosk out of the gallery and into a lobby because we don’t want to create a traffic jam with the people using it. Popularity is a nice problem to have to overcome.

Custom-made display cases are arriving from Germany today. They may be on the loading dock as I write. If they are, that will be a huge relief. If they’re here that means they’re not on a railroad siding outside of Baltimore. Would have been a shame to have our icons in custom mounts laid out on folding tables … not to mention a security nightmare. Just kidding … sort of.

I promise to be a more diligent blogger. Come see us! Feb. 12 through July 25! Oh, and happy holidays!

The Lincoln Financial Foundation Collection was given to the State of Indiana in December 2008 by the Lincoln Financial Foundation. The Indiana State Museum is home to the historic objects and art while most of the books, documents and photographs reside at the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne.

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