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Thomas J. Dyba Lincoln Home Collection

Identifier: SC-105


Thomas Dyba was an executive vice president of Illinois Benedictine College from 1974-1989. He was an avid scholar of Abraham Lincoln and this collection features many of his items. Papers include awards and recognitions, including a letter signed by then-president Ronald Reagaon. Carious periodicals and newsletters are part of this collection, many of which arrived posthumously.

This collection also contains files pertaining to the creation and exhibition of the Lincoln Funeral Train. Wayne Wesolowski was a chemistry professor at Benedictine University from 1975-2003 and also Director of the Lincoln Funeral Train Project from 1991-1995. Wesolowski is the author of several books and is featured in a video about the funeral train.

In 2004, the model homes and funeral train, along with the majority of Mr. Dyba's collection, were donated to the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield, Illinois.

This collection consists of records kept by Thomas Dyba relating to his research interests, associations and projects of Abraham Lincoln, including: The Abraham Lincon Associations, The Lincoln Colloqium, The Lincoln Fellowship of Wisconsin, The Lincoln Forum, The Lincoln Group of Illinois, and The Lincoln Group of New York.

Notes from association meetings for the above-listed groups, as well as their publications, are included. Audiovisual materials include 44 audiocassette tapes and 23 videocassettes.

The collection also includes information on the Lincoln Funeral Train project, headed by Wayne Wesolowski, circa 1991-1995.

"Obituary," Chicago Tribune News, March 9 2009, accessed October 17, 2013,
"Two significant collections donated to Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum,", April 4 2004, accessed October 17, 2013,


  • Creation: 1941 - 1997



7.5 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



The collection is broken down into four series: Series 1: Personal General information on My. Dyba, the Lincon model home and various other Lincoln materials Series 2: Lincoln Associations Series 3: The Lincoln Funeral Train Series 4: Publications and audiovisual

Within each series, the records are arranged alphabetically, and in the case of the publications, chronologically as well.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

This collection is believed to have been received directly from Thomas Dyba and/or his family. Acquisition paperwork is incomplete for this collection. Some publications were issued posthumously and may have been donated by Dyba's family or his colleague Wayne Wesolowski.

Related Materials

All materials listed below are available in the Benedictine University Library: Dyba, Thomas J. Seventeen Years at Eighth and Jackson: The Story of Life in the Lincoln Home. (Lisle: IBC Publications, Illinois Benedictine College, 1977) Dyba, Thomas J. The Story of the Only Home Abraham Lincoln Ever Owned. (Lisle: IBC Publications, Illinois Benedictine College, 1977) Wesolewski, Wayne. ABCs of Building Model Railroad Cars. (Blue Ridge Summit, PA: Tab Books, 1985) Wesolewski, Wayne and Mary Cay. The Lincoln Train is Coming. (Lisle, Ill.: Lincoln Group of Illinois, 1995) Wesolewski, Wayne and Mary Cay. Model Railroad Structures from A-Z. (Newtown, N.J.: Carstens, 1984) Wesolewski, Wayne and Mary Cay. Model Railroad Scratch Building. (Blue Ridge Summir, Pa.: Tab Books, 1981) Wesolewski, Wayne. The Lincoln Funeral Train. (produced by Bill Warrick. Tampa: Herron Rail Video, 2000)

Thomas J. Dyba Lincoln Home Collection
Jennifer E. Merriman
November 2010
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Repository Details

Part of the Archives and Special Collections Repository

Benedictine University
5700 College Rd.
Lisle IL 60532 United States