Lincoln Movie Stirs Excitement For Historians, Local Impersonator, Ohioans

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Worthington's Robert Brugler has portrayed our nation's 16th president for years.

"Well, it's good for business, and I think it's good for Mr. Lincoln.  And I think it's probably going to be good for the country," said Brugler.

He said in the past, Hollywood has tried to get Abraham Lincoln right. Now, Brugler said maybe they've achieved it with the new move, “Lincoln,” which launched on Friday.

"It does show Mr. Lincoln not necessarily a marble statue in a marble building. I think its Mr. Lincoln with flaws. He did get angry," said Brugler.

Angry especially when it came to the issue of slavery.

The movie shows Lincoln compromising, arm twisting, even conniving lawmakers in an effort to pass the 13th amendment.

In fact, there are a number of Ohio ties to the Lincoln presidency.

Lincoln learned at the statehouse in Columbus that the electors in Washington had officially named him president of the United States.

Lincoln historian Doris Kearns Goodwin wrote the book "Team of Rivals" on which the new movie is based.

"This was an era of monarchs and dictators, and the idea that you could just let people govern themselves seemed so strange. It's what's great about America, and Lincoln made that possible," said Kearns Goodwin.

And Lincoln did it while surrounded by his political adversaries, including Ohio Gov. Salmon Chase, who had opposed Lincoln for the Republican presidential nomination.

A rumor about a relationship between Chase's 20-year-old daughter Kate and the president had Mary Lincoln steaming.

"Whenever there's a rumor or story, even if it's not true, it usually suggests something. So suggesting Mary was jealous of Kate, that part was true," said Kearns Goodwin.

The film concentrates on the final months of Lincoln's life.

Following his assassination, Lincoln lay in state in Columbus at the statehouse and tens of thousands of Ohioans paid their respect to the fallen president.

"He saves the union and wins the war and he ends slavery forever," said Kearns Goodwin.

Thanks to Hollywood and an author who helped define his legacy, Abraham Lincoln is back on the world stage.

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