Last Revision Date
Kenneth Bernard taught history at Boston University for thirty-five years, with a focus on Abraham Lincoln. Over twenty of his students would go on to become members of the Lincoln Group of Boston, and four would serve as president of the group. Bernard joined the Lincoln Group in 1949. He served as secretary, 1954-1960, and as president, 1960-1969, and was an active member until his death in 1994.
Bernard presented many papers to the Lincoln Group. “Campaign Issues in 1860,” at the November 1949 meeting, was the first of many presentations on topics ranging from slavery and emancipation, to Lincoln scholarship, to Lincoln’s English ancestors. His last publication in 1993 was “A Lincoln Connection: Wisconsin-Massachusetts.” This publication recalls his friendship with Dr. Arthur Hansen of Wauwatosa, WI, and both this publication and Hansen are represented in the collection. Bernard had an interest in the music of the Civil War, and wrote, “A Song in His Heart” (published by Archille St. Onge, 1970) and “Lincoln and the Music of the Civil War (published by Caxton, 1966), which received the 1966 Benjamin Barondess Award for the book’s “contribution to the greater appreciation of the life and works of Lincoln.”
This collection is a part of the Lincoln Group of Boston Collection. It was originally donated by, and worked on, by Sylvia Larson, the daughter of Kenneth Bernard. It is divided into three series: Bernard and the Lincoln Group of Boston; the Bernard/Hansen Papers; and the Bernard/Kim Papers. Correspondence is contained in all three series. Series 2, the Bernard/Hansen Papers, contains correspondence between the two men, research material on Lincoln, and published works by Hansen. Arthur Hansen was a Wisconsin resident who communicated frequently with Bernard. Series 3, the Bernard/Kim Papers, contains correspondence, photographs, and material on Kim’s imprisonment in South Korea in the 1970s because of his Democratic ideals. Dr. Donggill Kim, of Seoul, South Korea, wrote the first full-length account of the life of Abraham Lincoln published in Korea in 1976. He wrote many books on Lincoln, published in both English and Korean.