Borrowing from the Native American definition of a "temporary structure," the Republican "Wigwam" was made ready for the opening of the Convention on May 9, 1860. The structure needed to be large enough to accommodate 2,500 people. To do so would require an enclosure 100 feet wide and seventy feet deep. To allow for this, Richard Oglesby, future three-term governor, one-term U. S. Senator from Illinois, and a Decatur resident secured a large tent for the purpose, supposedly supplied by a circus company. The only wooden components were the speaker's stand and the poles that held the tent up.
An interesting and humorous event occurred shortly after the beginning of the convention, while Lincoln tried to maintain an unassuming role. As the convention began, Richard Oglesby, promptly made a motion: "I am informed that a distinguished citizen of Illinois and one whom Illinois will ever delight to honor is present, and I wish to move that this body invite him to a seat on the stand - Abraham Lincoln." The delegates roared loudly trying to push Lincoln through the immense crowd to the front of the stage. The crowd, however, was too dense for Lincoln to penetrate. he was then lifted bodily into the air - the delegates called it "troosted" - and passed over the heads and shoulders of the audience. Much to Lincoln's relief, he was finally passed to the stand, taking his seat to the continuing roar of the crowd.
|Series||This marker is part of the Illinois: Looking for Lincoln series|
|Marker Condition||No reports yet|
|Date Added||Friday, October 24th, 2014 at 12:50am PDT -07:00|
|UTM (WGS84 Datum)||16S E 332697 N 4412057|
|Decimal Degrees||39.84206667, -88.95540000|
|Degrees and Decimal Minutes||N 39° 50.524', W 88° 57.324'|
|Degrees, Minutes and Seconds||39° 50' 31.44" N, 88° 57' 19.44" W|
|Driving Directions||Google Maps|
|Closest Postal Address||At or near 142 N Merchant St, Decatur IL 62523, US|
|Alternative Maps||Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap|
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