The Life and Works of Life of Carl Sandburg and Family

3 Sessions: Wednesdays, January 12, 19, 26

10:00 – Noon

Sink Building Room 233 

Member Fee: $40, Non-Member Fee: $50 


As a young man of 19, Carl Sandburg left his home in Illinois for a brief odyssey as a hobo. Not always knowing how and where, he traveled some 2,000 miles finding whatever jobs and beds he could along the way. Sandburg would later follow many paths: poet, performer, biographer, lecturer and more. His achievements were pioneering, and he often pursued these at the same time during his long life. Sandburg’s personal narrative captured the public’s imagination and made him a national media figure.

“Except for Walt Whitman, no other American poet has been so immediately responsive to the convolutions of American life” writes his biographer, Penelope Niven. “From 1900 until 1967, Sandburg’s voice addressed the pivotal events of this century.”

This three session series will trace Sandburg’s and his family’s personal life history and their many achievements couched in his core beliefs and the historical context of the times. Lectures will employ images, quotations, and visual and audio recordings by Sandburg and by those who wrote about his life and work or knew him personally. Participants can expect to develop new understandings of the depth and breadth of Sandburg’s work as well as the achievements of his family. Time for questions and discussion will be planned throughout the presentation.

John W. Quinley, a retired college administrator and faculty member, currently volunteers as a house docent for Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site and teaches American History for A-B Technical Community College. John holds an Ed.D. in Higher Education Administration and an M.A. in Humanities among other degrees.