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Civil War Moral Dilemmas to be Addressed in Free Duquesne History Forum

The moral struggle of fighting for freedom during the American Civil War will be the focus of Duquesne University's annual free History Forum lecture at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 9, in the Power Center Ballroom on campus. A reception will precede the lecture at 6 p.m. in the adjacent Shepperson Suite.

The American Civil War: Conflicting Views of Faith and Freedom will be presented by Barbara Franco, president and executive director at Gettysburg Seminary Ridge Museum since 2012. She will explore how the religious discord, wrought by the Second Great Awakening, influenced thinking about moral issues of war and slavery, and how Americans of all faiths who met at Gettysburg grappled not only with life and death, but with divergent ideas of faith and freedom that would shape the nation's future.

By addressing religious beliefs, Franco suggests new ways for historians and the public to understand and interpret Civil War history.

Her background includes holding curatorial and administrative positions at the Museum of Our National Heritage in Lexington, Mass., and The Historical Society of Washington, D.C., among others. From 2004 to 2011, she served as executive director of the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, a statewide agency responsible for the state archives, the state museum, the state historic preservation office and 25 museums and historic sites around Pennsylvania.

The event is free and open to the public, and registration is not required. For more information, call 412.396.6470.

For more than four decades, Duquesne's Department of History has hosted the History Forum to address topics of civic and academic interest. Dr. Michael Cahall, assistant professor of history, is director of this year's forum.

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. Duquesne, a campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, has been nationally recognized for its academic programs, community service and commitment to sustainability. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.