Since I'm in the neighborhood today anyway, I might just swing over to the Hartquist Funeral Home's Engebretson Chapel in Luverne. They're displaying an "authentic replica" of President Lincoln's casket, according to today's Worthington Daily Globe.
The replica coffin is identical to the original coffin that holds Lincoln's remains, with two exceptions. The replica is not lead-lined, and it does not feature the formal silver nameplate on the top, which was inscribed with Lincoln's birth and death dates.
"It probably was an impressive casket at the time," says the funeral home director, well-skilled in the art of dampening expectations.
Batesville Casket Company asked for and received permission to create the replica in 1984. There are four of them touring the country and their "appearances" are booked through 2010. Apparently, they're quite popular for funeral home grand openings, which is whole 'nother story, I'm sure.
(Photo: Via Flickr/daveblog (Creative Commons license))
Why didn't they take the next step and include replicas of Lincoln's remains?
"Well-skilled in the art of dampening expectations"--great line!