Obama to be sworn in using Lincoln Bible
When president-elect Barack Obama takes the oath of office on January 20, he will use the same Bible that Abraham Lincoln used for his swearing-in ceremony, dpa reported.
Obama will be the first president to be sworn in using the Lincoln Bible since 1861, the Presidential Inaugural Committee (PIC) said Tuesday.
While there is no constitutional requirement for a Bible to be used at the swearing-in, presidents have traditionally done so, choosing a volume with personal or historical significance.
"President-elect Obama is deeply honoured that the Library of Congress has made the Lincoln Bible available for use during his swearing-in," said PIC Executive Director Emmett Beliveau.
Obama was committed to holding an inauguration that "celebrates America's unity, and the use of this historic Bible will provide a powerful connection to our common past and common heritage," Beliveau said.
The 1,280-page, burgundy-velvet bound Bible was published in 1853 and bought by Supreme Court clerk William Thomas Carroll for Lincoln's swearing-in ceremony on March 4, 1861.
The Lincoln Bible will be on display at the Library of Congress from February 12 to May 9, 2009, and then travel to five US cities, as part of an exhibition entitled "With Malice Toward None: The Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Exhibition." Lincoln, the nation's 16th president, was born on February 12, 1809.
Obama is to travel from Philadelphia to Washington by train, tracing the path that Lincoln took to the capital. The PIC will host a welcome event at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC on January 18.