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1916 was a thrilling time for Southwest Fort Wayne. The Foster Park area, along with the Rudisell Boulevard system, was being developed. Col. David Foster was assisting the purchase and development of one of Fort Wayne’s exceptional parks, Foster Park, named after the Colonel. And in the midst of all that, a replica of Lincoln’s birthplace was being first proposed to the Board of Park Commissioners.

The replica Lincoln log cabin was constructed and presented to the city of Fort Wayne in 1920. Lincoln National Insurance Company’s Samuel M. Foster, Col. Foster’s brother and co-developer of Foster Park, dedicated the cabin which was then located across from the golf course. It was moved to its present location and was renovated by Lincoln National in 1936.

Floods, bugs, and Indiana weathering took its toll on this familiar landmark. In the past few months, work was begun to renovate the log cabin. The roof was replaced with waterproof shake shingles. The deteriorating logs and chinking was repaired. The interior and exterior was coated with waterproof and bug-proof materials.

The rededication of Lincoln’s replica log cabin took place on June 1, 2006. Mayor Graham Richard, Parks Director Alvin R. Moll, Lincoln Financial Group’s Sandi Kemmish, and City Councilman Dr. Tom Hayhurst, spoke of the importance of the historical attraction. The event celebrated a significant and long-term association between the city and Lincoln Financial Group. Lincoln Financial Group donated $5,000 to help with the renovation project.

Make it a point to stop and check out the Lincoln cabin next time you’re enjoying our wonderful Foster Park. Thanks to Col. David Foster’s vision to enhance the quality of life for the residents of Southwest Fort Wayne, and the city’s Parks and Recreation Department, visitors to Foster Park will be assured to see this familiar landmark for many years to come.

The Waynedale News Staff

Mary Stark

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