Mary Todd Lincoln coming to life Monday

DOWNEY - This Monday, the city of Downey's Senior Mondays class, co-hosted by Harriet Paine and Steve Sampley, will present a performance by an indomitable "visitor from the past": Mary Todd Lincoln.The performance will be held in the Harriet Paine Event Center at Downey Adult School. Doors open at 2:45 p.m. and the program begins at 3:45. Dinner is served afterward. Mrs. Lincoln, accompanied by her brother-in-law, N.W. Edwards, will "step forward" from their year of 1876, more than a decade after the tragic death of her husband, to describe her journey from childhood mansion to beginning married life in a boarding room above a tavern, experiencing the joy and frustration of her life with Abraham Lincoln and her bitter treatment by the press during his presidency, to surviving as a widow for a decade before her incarceration in an insane asylum until Edwards and others aided in her release. Mrs. Lincoln is portrayed by Gail Reifert, who began historial reenacting at Long Beach's Rancho Los Cerritos. She has also co-authored with husband Gene, "Women Who Fought: An American History" and a dozen humorous Victorian era vignettes. Mr. Edwards is played by Gene Dermody, who taught American history and California history for three decades at Cerritos College. He was the first one at the college to design and teach a class on the history of American women. Admission to the program is $5 (cash) and includes dinner catered by Cafe 'N Stuff. Dr. Bob Flynn will provide piano music.

********** Published: January 31, 2013 - Volume 11 - Issue 42