HLH Summer Reopening Event

Letter from the Director

Hello everyone! I hope this newsletter finds you healthy and happy. When I first began drafting this article, I sat on the front porch of the Harlan-Lincoln House. The front porch continues to be one of the most complimented features of the house, second only to the bay windows on the east side of the house. The front porch is also the space where the Harlan-Lincoln House hosted the Reopening Event on Monday, July 12, 2021. The threat of rainy weather limited the availability of outdoor space, and the porch became the gathering spot to welcome visitors and volunteers. Fortunately, the rain held off while the Mount Pleasant Chamber of Commerce hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony, and guests enjoyed some light refreshments and quick tours of the house (with food and drinks kept outside, of course).

Since the July event, the Harlan-Lincoln House has hosted a number of visitors. Many guests were from Iowa, but the museum also welcomed travelers from several states, including California, Texas, and Michigan, to name a few. This assortment of visitors reflects the magnitude of the collection found at the Harlan-Lincoln House, as belongings of both local and national importance.

Because of the size of this collection, the Harlan-Lincoln House began cataloging all of the objects held at the museum this summer. You may be asking yourself, what does it take to catalog an entire museum? Thanks to the fundamental support of donors, the Harlan-Lincoln House was able to purchase Past Perfect Museum Software. This software streamlines the acquisition and loan processes, catalogs artifacts, produces custom reports and forms, tracks donations and memberships, creates mailings, sends emails, and much more. In short, Past Perfect allows the Harlan-Lincoln House to keep track of all of the objects in our care. When an article in the museum is recorded in the database, it receives a catalog number. Instituting a cataloging program completes one of the Five Core Documents put forth by the American Alliance of Museums. These Core Documents are fundamental for professional museum operations and embody core museum values and practices.

If you would like to volunteer or donate to help complete this cataloging project, please email hlhouse@iw.edu. On behalf of the Friends of the Harlan-Lincoln House and Iowa Wesleyan University, thank you for your continued support. Preserving and enhancing the Harlan-Lincoln House would not be possible without your support.

Madison Pullis

Director of the Harlan-Lincoln House

Find the Harlan-Lincoln House on Facebook!

To be informed of the most recent updates and event announcements at the Harlan-Lincoln House, check out our new Facebook page. Updates are posted weekly, and we might sneak in a joke or a fun tidbit to share. Visit facebook.com/harlanlincolnhouse/

Upcoming Events

Homecoming Open House

As part of the Iowa Wesleyan Homecoming 2021 celebration, the Harlan-Lincoln House will be open for additional time on Saturday, October 2.

After the IW Homecoming Parade, head over to the house from 11am – 1pm for special Homecoming hours!

Are you an Iowa Wesleyan alumni with memories of the Harlan-Lincoln House? We want to know! Send us an email at hlhouse@iw.edu


Flyer for

The Spirited Lincoln Women

Featuring author C.J. King

October 14, 2021 at 5:00pm

For her presentation, author C.J. King will pose as the last female Lincoln family member, Mary “Peggy” Beckwith. By reflecting on the Lincoln women’s spiritual connection to Christian Science, as well as on their individual, spirited personalities, and their family and community relationships, King will communicate a fuller understanding of these extraordinary women.

King has a family connection of her own to the Lincoln women. She is a distant cousin of Mary Harlan Lincoln, the President and First Lady’s daughter-in-law. A professional writer for 40 years, King is a Vermont resident and a native Hoosier. She holds a B.A. in journalism from Ball State University and an M.F.A. in writing from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.

The presentation is free to the public and will be held at the Iowa Wesleyan Chapel at 5:00pm on October 14. A reception and book signing opportunity will follow the presentation. Masks are required inside all IW buildings.

Quarterly Quandary Update

The Harlan-Lincoln House Summer 2021 newsletter highlighted the curious case of Bobbie the bobcat and Assistant Professor of Biology, Dr. Carlo Ignoffo. Very little information has been uncovered about Bobbie and Dr. Ignoffo since then, but here’s what we do know: Dr. Ignoffo, the Iowa Wesleyan biology professor who cared for Bobbie, was listed as a faculty member

in the 1958 and 1959 editions of the Iowa Wesleyan yearbook, The Croaker. During that time, faculty and staff were allowed to live on the second floor of the Harlan-Lincoln House; the wallpaper located behind a door on a second floor wall and a key rack next to the library door remain in the house as remnants of this time. 

Uncle Wiggily's Bedtime Stories

Therefore, it is possible that the Ignoffo family lived on the second floor of the Harlan-Lincoln House with their pet bobcat, Bobbie.

A popular serial titled “Uncle Wiggily’s Bedtime Story” published in many regional newspa

pers referred to one of the main characters as Bobbie the Bobcat. Perha

ps this cartoon Bobbie the Bobcat is the namesake of the real Bobbie.

No other publications have been found that mention a bobcat named Bobbie anywhere in Mount Pleasant, Iowa.

Do you have any further information about Dr. Ignoffo or Bobbie? Share your insights with us at hlhouse@iw.edu and your submission may appear in upcoming issues of the Harlan-Lincoln House newsletter.

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