Friday, May 16, 2014

The Big Squeal featured at Assumptionfest

Abe ‘booked’ for Assumption Festival

Abraham Lincoln’s sense of fun will add to the merriment at the Assumption Festival, scheduled for June 26, 27 and 28,

In the 1840s, noisy pigs wallowing under the Christian County courthouse floor were so loud that an amused Lincoln asked the judge for a “writ of quietus” for them.

That witty request has caused ripples of smiles ever since. The episode anchors the newly released second edition of “The Big Squeal,” a true story of the county’s “pigstory” written in the voice of a real life pig named “Liberty.

“As told to author” Carol Alexander of Taylorville will join “Sixteen Tons” writer Kevin Corley of Springfield at a special literary affair set for 2 p.m. Saturday, June 27 during Assumption’s annual festival. They will welcome visitors in front of the Assumption Historical Building.

Mingling with book lovers, the authors will display, inscribe and sell their books rooted in area history.

In honor of the county’s 175th birthday this year, each copy of “The Big Squeal” is adorned by a gold medallion inscribed, “Collector’s Edition … 1839-2014.” The edition comes in soft and hard covers. 

Set in the often over-looked heartland of America, “The Big Squeal” is the memoir of a formerly starving, orphan piglet that discovered the Abe vs. courthouse pigs story while trotting along part of the old Eighth Judicial Circuit, known as Lincoln’s muddy road to the presidency.

Mini-stories introduce readers of all ages to Mr. Lincoln and his vital role in American history and to the circuit itself. Acclaimed historian Doris Kearns Goodwin of “Lincoln” the movie fame praised the book as “A rare glimpse into Abraham Lincoln’s lighter side…”

Colorful original illustrations portray real people of all ages and diversity, pioneering and current courthouses and other landmarks. Among the featured caricatures is Christian County Board Chairman Paul Schmitz of Pana.

A folk art map created by Taylorville High School students Camille Beyers and Mathen Campbell opens the book. It also adorns coffee/chocolate/juice mugs and postcards, which commemorate the county’s 175th anniversary.

Both “The Big Squeal” and “Sixteen Tons” are available on A saga of coal mining history and union wars, “Sixteen Tons” may be purchased at Dana’s Book Exchange on the Taylorville Square. “The Big Squeal” is sold at Cottage Rose Gift Shoppe and PS Printing on the square. 

The book is also available at OTP's website at


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