Donna D. McCreary

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General Information

Name: Donna D. McCreary

Pen Name: None

Born: 1958 in Frankfort, Germany



Illinois Connection

Donna writes books about Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln - both Illinois subjects of interest.

Biographical and Professional Information

Donna McCreary’s lifelong interest in history and the Lincoln family led her to begin portraying Mary Todd Lincoln, wife of the 16th President, in 1992. Since then, she has extensively researched original documents for information to take her audiences into America’s turbulent past. She has performed for various schools, organizations, and museums throughout the Midwest, including the Lincoln Home National Historic Site in Springfield, Illinois and the Mary Todd Lincoln House in Lexington, Kentucky. As a member of the Association of Lincoln Presenters, she is a recipient of the Outstanding Mary Todd Lincoln Award in 1997 and 2000; the Glenn Schnizlein Memorial Award in 2005; and the Lincoln Legend Award in 2007.

Several of her articles about the Lincoln family have been published. Her book Fashionable First Lady offers insight to the personality of Mary Lincoln through study of her exquisite wardrobe, and her book Lincoln's Table is a collection of recipes for food that Lincoln enjoyed from his boyhood through his presidency.

In recognition for her work as an educator, author, and Mary Lincoln presenter, McCreary has been included in several editions of Who’s Who in America and has also received numerous civic and professional awards. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in secondary education from Indiana University SE, and is a member of the Society of Midland Authors. McCreary resides near Charlestown, a southern Indiana community.

Published Works

  • Lincoln's Table: A President's Culinary Journey from Cabin to Cosmopolitan, Lincoln Presentations, 2008
  • Fashionable First Lady: The Victorian Wardrobe of Mary Lincoln, Lincoln Presentations, 2007
  • Lincoln`s Table: Victorian Recipes From Kentucky, Indiana & Illinois To The White House, Guild Press of Indiana, 2000

Titles for Purchase and at Your Library

Lincoln's Table: A President's Culinary Journey from Cabin to Cosmopolitan

ISBN: 0979538319
Release Date: 2008-06-26

Find on World Cat

Fashionable First Lady: The Victorian Wardrobe of Mary Lincoln

ISBN: 0979538300
Release Date: 2007-06-14

Find on World Cat

Lincoln's Table

ISBN: 1578600898
Release Date: 2000-01

Find on World Cat

Literary Awards


Speaking Engagements and Upcoming Appearances

Speaking Engagement Availability: Yes, contact author at: 812-256-2370 or via email:

Donna's formal presentations include:

  • Fashionable First Lady- (about 1 hour)

A power point presentations taking a look at Mary Lincoln's exquisite wardrobe and the fashion behind the wardrobe choices she made. Also discussed are general fashion trends for the 19th century, mourning customs, and the importance of dress and style to the aristocracy to Victorian society.

  • Mary, the Quintessential Hostess - (about 1 hour)

A look at entertaining in the Lincoln Home and the Lincoln administration of the White House. Was Mary Lincoln a gracious hostess as reported by her sister, or the stingy hostess described by a member of the Lincoln family.

  • Mary's Legacy, according to her son Robert Lincoln - (1 hour)

What we know and do not know about Mary Lincoln, we can attribute to the diligent work of her son Robert. The Lincoln Legacy fell upon his shoulders, and he left it somewhat contradictory. It was through Robert's work and guidance that early historians began creating an image of the Lincoln's - both good and bad.

  • The Gift of Love: The Relationship between Robert Lincoln and the Todd family - (about 1 hour)

After his mother's death, Robert Lincoln was able to do what his mother never did - forgive and embrace the Confederate members of the Todd family. Through letters written between the Robert Lincoln family and his aunt Emily Todd Helm's family, a relationship developed that centered on a mutual family love and forgiveness. Robert embraced the Todd's; and many of them depended on him.

  • Mourning: It's a Way of Life - (about 50 minutes)

Just because a woman was dressed in mourning attire did not mean she was always a widow. This program takes a look at mourning rituals throughout the 19th century and the impact they had on American women. Special attention is given to the mourning of Mary Lincoln.

External Links

Donna D. McCreary on WorldCat

Donna D. McCreary on Amazon


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