Previous Programs & Venues (page 1)
Presidential Homes and Historic Sites
Local Mentor, Ohio & other
links of interest
information regarding reasonable fees and bookings contact us at:
Lucretia Garfield – 1881 (by Mathew Brady/L.C. Handy – LOC)
Skip Trombetti, Van’s Photos, Mentor, OH
Deborah Weinkamer as Lucretia Garfield...
Debbie has been involved with the Garfield family story since 1998
and has done extensive research into their life and times. She has
been portraying Lucretia Garfield since 2001, when she teamed up
with Ed Haney as James A. Garfield. Having an Associate in Arts
degree and a Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education,
Debbie strives to make her presentations engaging, meaningful, and
educational – for audiences of all ages.
She continues to be involved at local sites as the Lead Volunteer
at the James A. Garfield National Historic Site in Mentor, OH, and
as a seasonal, volunteer docent at the Garfield Memorial Cabin in
Moreland Hills, OH. She holds membership in the National First
Ladies’ Library in Canton, the Ohio History Connection, Lake County
Historical Society, and the Moreland Hills Historical Society, as
well as in the local Civil War Roundtable.
Debbie is honored to be personal friends with the Cleveland-area
descendants of President James A. and Lucretia Garfield.
She is married to her high school sweetheart (a history
enthusiast), and has two married sons and two grandsons.
To read an interesting guest blog spot "written" by Mrs. Garfield
titled, “The Vanishing First Lady” – or Am I?" click the following
Debbie also created a touching story about the evolution of James
and Lucretia Garfield’s courtship and marriage for Valentine’s Day
2018. It can be found at the link below:
“Civil War on the Homefront: Lucretia Garfield in Hiram, OH”
Step into the shoes of Lucretia Garfield, facing her husband’s
absence during the Civil War.
Hear tales of her life as a young wife and mother in Hiram, OH:
establishing their first home, raising a toddler, participating
in homefront activities with other soldiers’ wives, all while
concerned about her husband, two brothers, and neighbors off
fighting with the Union Army.
An excerpted letter or two between Gen. Garfield and Lucretia
may be shared as part of the presentation.
“Portrait of a 19th
The Courtship &
Marriage of James & Lucretia Garfield”
Lucretia Rudolph Garfield shares the
evolution of her courtship and marriage to James Garfield. What
began with “the stern word duty” and progressed through the
“Dark Years,” proved to be a loving union of true partners by
the time they reached the Executive Mansion in 1881.
Listen, learn, and experience a view of
how their relationship changed as Debbie gives a first-person
account of the details of
their private lives.
The Garfields’ letters - saved by Lucretia
and edited by John Shaw in Crete and James – chronicle
their relationship, and
supply the narrative with candor and perseverance.
“An Ohio Girl in Washington”
How does a shy, reserved,
farmer’s daughter from Garrettsville, OH grow up to become a US
Congressman’s wife and First Lady?
Lucretia Rudolph Garfield shares
(you’d call it a PowerPoint
reveal her life in Washington City during the 1860s to 1880s. Discover how
and where the Garfield family lived when Congress was in session. Learn
about their vagabond life in Ohio every summer ~ and how that changed when
they purchased their Mentor (OH) farm, “Lawnfield.” You’ll also empathize
with Lucretia’s hesitancy to put her family’s life in a “fishbowl” for
reporters and Washington socialites to critique.
“A Conversation with Mary & Lucretia”
as Mary Todd Lincoln
Two American women – from different
generations – sharing their differences and commonalities. Mary Lincoln and
Lucretia Garfield meet over tea and discuss their paths to the White House
and beyond. You will be surprised about the experiences they had in
common! Hear them expound on interesting topics such as their educations
and how they met their husbands, with private stories about marriage and
their children. Discover how they dealt with life in the Executive Mansion
~ and assassination.
These two educated, intelligent women also examine their early lives and how
they grew into independent widows. One becomes the “Vanishing First Lady,”
while the other remains one of the most misunderstood First Ladies.
us for a conversation that was never in your history books. It’s also a
perfect way to celebrate Women’s History Month!
“Beyond the Veil”
Mary Lincoln & Lucretia Garfield
"veil" represents death, and to go beyond it can mean a near-death
experience or reincarnation, or it can refer to transcending the ethereal
through meditation or a séance, in which the living attempt to communicate
with the dead.
the 19th Century, many middle-to-upper class people believed in
Spiritualism. It was especially appealing to women who were grieving the
death of a loved one.
We take you back to 1881: a time when families had lost loved ones to
childhood illnesses and civil war; where a floral wreath was attached to the
front door to indicate a death in the family and funerals were held in
parlors at home; when mourning rituals often lasted a year or more – and
many widows never returned to wearing cheerful colors.
Two former First Ladies try to find some solace after experiencing
Portrayed by Marian King & Debbie Weinkamer
“Life After President Garfield”
The terrible tragedy of President Garfield’s
assassination in 1881 shattered Lucretia’s world. First Lady for
only three months, she was suddenly thrust into the spotlight during
his suffering after the shooting, staying constantly by his side.
She was admired and respected by her fellow Americans and people
abroad as she publicly exhibited strength and courage. However, her
shy and private nature resumed after her husband’s death when she
returned to Mentor, Ohio.
Through her own words, learn more about
Lucretia Garfield’s dedication to her husband’s memory and discover
how she occupied her remaining 36-1/2 years. Debbie’s portrayal of
the Widow Garfield at the turn of the twentieth century will explain
how her children achieved their own destinies and why her husband
had always said that Lucretia “rose up to every occasion.”
(Photo by Jesse Reed)
Around the turn of the 20th Century, the Widow Lucretia travelled
to South Pasadena, CA yearly from Fall to late Spring to avoid the harsh
northeastern Ohio winters. You’ll hear the story of train travel to the
“Mediterranean of the West.” What other famous ladies lived nearby? You’ll
see details of the Greene & Greene craftsman bungalow built for Lucretia in
1903. Was she a Grand Marshal in the Rose Parade?
“A Garfield Family Album”
Learn more about the descendants of James and Lucretia through a
PowerPoint presentation by Debbie Weinkamer:
Discover what the five Garfield children grow-up to
See family photos
Hear wedding stories
Learn about college, occupational, and public service
Are there modern descendants?
All highlighted in this informative program!
R. Garfield: A Remarkable Life”
PowerPoint presentation by Debbie Weinkamer featuring the story of an Ohio
woman whose life goes from Portage County, OH ~ to the White House ~ and to
young widowhood. Is “Discreet Crete” really a “Vanishing First Lady?”
Discover what fills her life after her husband’s
funeral, and what her children and grandchildren believe about the woman who
lives to be 85 years old. What is contained in her will? Is she laid to
rest next to her husband at Lake View Cemetery in Cleveland?
What people say about Debbie...
|James R. Garfield II, the great-grandson of President James
Garfield, used to say, “If I want to know anything about my
ancestors, I ask Debbie.”