A special hybrid History Hour hosted live at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute and livestreamed via Zoom.

During the first half of the twentieth century, Carl Sandburg seemed to be everywhere and do everything: poet and political activist; investigative reporter, columnist, and film critic; lecturer, folk singer, and musicologist; Lincoln biographer and historian; children’s author; novelist; and media celebrity.  He was one of the most successful American writers of thnte twentieth century.  But as time went on, his fame began to fade, and by the twenty-first century, the public knew little, if anything, about his legacy.

This presentation will help participants discover or rediscover this American icon. It is based on Dr. Quinley’s recent publication, Discovering Carl Sandburg: The Eclectic Life of an American Icon. The talk will employ images, quotations, and visual and audio recordings by Sandburg, and by those that wrote about his life and work or knew him personally. Time for questions and discussion is provided at the conclusion.


About the Speaker: Dr. John Quinley is a retired college administrator and faculty member who teaches American history at A-B Technical Community College in Asheville. He holds an Ed.D. in Higher Education Administration and an M.A. in Humanities. Quinley served as a docent for Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site for several years, and writes articles and gives presentations about Sandburg. He was raised in Maywood, Illinois—just a few blocks from where Sandburg lived 30 years earlier. He currently resides with his wife, Melissa, in Hendersonville—just a few miles from Sandburg’s historic Flat Rock, North Carolina home.