November 19 marks the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s iconic Gettysburg Address, largely considered one of the most poignant, stirring, and important speeches in American history. And naturally, Civil War buff documentarian Ken Burns wouldn’t let an occasion like this pass by without some sort of commemoration.
Though his 90-minute documentary The Address won’t premiere on PBS until the spring of 2014, Burns has already set up a website called Learn the Address, which encourages “everyone in America to video record themselves reading or reciting the Abraham Lincoln’s famous speech.”
Scads of famous Americans have already taken Burns up on his challenge – including every living president, Lincoln director Steven Spielberg, Bill Gates, and slightly less predictable participants like Alyssa Milano. Which of them best exemplifies Honest Abe’s signature mix of dignity, intelligence, and humanity? Decide for yourself after checking out this handy mashup video. (Hint: It’s not Taylor Swift.)
Alas, a full video of Swift’s Gettysburg Address has yet to make it onto YouTube. Will you settle instead for Stephen Colbert’s version, performed in full Lincoln drag?