Abraham Lincoln went through hell and high water trying to find a commanding Union general-in-chief who was neither incompetent nor insubordinate (George B. McLellan, the worst of the lot, was both -- plus vain and arrogant). Finally in 1864, three grueling years into the Civil War, Lincoln picked the right man: Ulysses S. Grant. Both Midwesterners, both sharing a similar temperament and perhaps even some of the same demons, the president and the military man had an unspoken understanding of and respect for one another. "Lincoln Visits White Haven
" recreates this rare synergy. White Haven was Grant's country home outside St. Louis (today of course it's within St. Louis); in this free program Lincoln re-enactor Fritz Klein portrays the president paying a fictional visit to his top general's estate. "Lincoln" (Kleincoln?) will ponder U.S. Grant and the future of our war-torn country from 1863's vantage point -- back then, it was anybody's guess if we had any future, period. Following the presentation there will be a Q&A with Klein. White Haven is part of the Ulysses S. Grant National Historic Site (7400 Grant Road, Sappington; 314-842-1867 or www.nps.gov/ulsg
), where the event starts at 1 p.m. Reservations are required, but admission is free.
Sat., Feb. 23, 2013