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Broadcaster Helps Protect Lincoln Artifacts

Glenn Beck’s charity, Mercury One, gives Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum $50,000 to help prevent sale of rare artifacts.  

SPRINGFIELD – Media personality, author and political commentator Glenn Beck is helping to ensure that one-of-a-kind Lincoln artifacts remain accessible to visitors at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum. The library’s executive director, Alan Lowe, announced Thursday that Beck’s charity, Mercury One, has gifted $50,869.

“We are extraordinarily grateful for the generosity of Glenn, his listeners, and Mercury One donors,” Lowe said. “Glenn contacted us as soon as he heard of our challenge and asked how he could help. The donation from Mercury One, as well as Glenn’s continued call for his audience to protect Lincoln’s legacy, is inspiring.”

“We believe in what Alan and his amazing team are building and preserving,” Beck said. “Abraham Lincoln’s mission didn’t end in the 1860s. His words challenge us yet today, to do the hard things, and help free those in chains and heal the wounds. Slavery is still a blight on humanity all over the world including the United States. My listeners also believe in his mission and his goal of ‘healing the wounds’ of our nation ‘with malice toward none and charity for all.’ That line is, in fact, the mission statement I, coincidentally, gave to my Mercury One charity organization years ago. It is part of the fabric of who we are. Abraham Lincoln is just as relevant and important as he was in 1860, and we are honored to help preserve and amplify his voice.”

Some artifacts and documents housed at the Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum are actually owned by a private organization, the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation. The foundation owes about $9.2 million on the collection – known as the Taper Collection – and warns that it may have to sell items if it cannot raise money soon to pay the remainder of the foundation’s debt.

That means private owners could snap up parts of the collection, which includes the blood-stained gloves Lincoln was carrying at Ford’s Theatre, the oldest surviving sample of Lincoln’s handwriting, his presidential seal and much more.

“When I heard about the museum and the help they needed last summer, we started a ‘5 4 Lincoln’ fundraiser,” Beck said. “Thousands of my listeners have signed up to donate $5 a month to help grow the library and preserve these treasures. I wish we could do it all, but we are excited to play any role in helping. Join us at We are committed through the long haul.”

Director Lowe will give Mercury One’s donation to the foundation so it can be put toward the debt.

“It has been a pleasure working with Glenn and Mercury One over the past few months to make this donation a reality. He has a real passion for history, and Mercury One’s mission includes building educational initiatives around first-source documents and leadership training,” Lowe added. “I hope others are inspired by this contribution and make their own donations to this important cause or to other programs at the presidential library and museum.”

Contributions can be made at

The foundation had to borrow $23 million when it bought the Taper Collection 11 years ago. Despite significant progress in paying the principal and interest, the foundation still owes $9.2 million. The bank that holds the loan says the debt must be paid by October 2019.

The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum is dedicated to telling the story of America’s 16th president through old-fashioned scholarship and modern technology. It also serves as the state historical library.

The library holds an unparalleled collection of Lincoln material, as well as some 12 million items pertaining to other aspects of Illinois history. The Museum uses exhibits, eye-catching special effects and innovative story-telling to educate and inspire visitors from around the world.

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Mercury One is eligible to receive tax-deductible contributions in accordance with Internal Revenue Code Section 170. No goods or services were provided by Mercury One in exchange for your donation. Mercury One, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Federal Tax ID #45-3929881. Your donation may be considered tax-deductible. Please consult with a tax attorney or an accountant for specific guidance.

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