The world will never know what Abraham Lincoln would have thought of house music but his house is the temporary home for several artifacts from the movement.

How did Frankie Knuckles reel-to-reel and turntable wind up in the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum? It’s part of an ongoing exhibition called “State of Sound” that gathers together bits of memorabilia to tell the story of Illinois’ artists influence on music around the world.

Jeremy Gorner in the Chicago Tribune mentions a few of them, including “a 1970s paisley pants and vest outfit worn by soul singer Curtis Mayfield, and the striped jacket jazz keyboardist Herbie Hancock sported in the 1986 film Round Midnight.

Alongside blues legend Buddy Guy’s stratocaster, Illinois-born Miles Davis’ trumpet and stage costumes from Earth Wind & Fire are the reel-to-reel belonging to Frankie Knuckles (perhaps the same one he used to play the demo of “The Whistle Song” at Sound Factory Bar) and a turntable (apparently just one) used “by the late DJ Frankie Knuckles.”

The exhibit in Springfield, Illinois (the state capitol) celebrates “the achievements and contributions of Illinois’ finest in music” and was written by award-winning author, documentary-producer and former Chicago Sun-Times Columnist and Critic, Dave Hoekstra.

The exhibit also has a podcast, which has interviewed a few key figures in Chicago house history. Here are episodes with Steve “Silk” Hurley and Derrick Carter:

State of Sound” is open until January 23, 2022 at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum

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