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President Lincoln’s oldest son was on the scene of three presidential assassinations. His father in 1865, Garfield in 1881, and McKinley in 1901.

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Abraham Lincoln (February 12, 1809April 15, 1865) was the sixteenth President of the United States, serving from March 4, 1861 until his assassination. As an outspoken opponent of the expansion of slavery in the United States,[1][2] Lincoln won the Republican Party nomination in 1860 and was elected president later that year. During his term, he helped preserve the United States by leading the defeat of the secessionist Confederate States of America in the American Civil War. He introduced measures that resulted in the abolition of slavery, issuing his Emancipation Proclamation in 1863 and promoting the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution in 1865.

Lincoln closely supervised the victorious war effort, especially the selection of top generals, including Ulysses S. Grant. Historians have concluded that he handled the factions of the Republican Party well, bringing leaders of each faction into his cabinet and forcing them to cooperate. Lincoln successfully defused a war scare with the United Kingdom in 1861. Under his leadership, the Union took control of the border slave states at the start of the war. Additionally, he managed his own reelection in the 1864 presidential election.

Opponents of the war (also known as "Copperheads") criticized him for refusing to compromise on the slavery issue. Conversely, the Radical Republicans, an abolitionist faction of the Republican Party, criticized him for moving too slowly in abolishing slavery. Even with these road blocks, Lincoln successfully rallied public opinion through his rhetoric and speeches; his Gettysburg Address is but one example of this. At the close of the war, Lincoln held a moderate view of Reconstruction, seeking to speedily reunite the nation through a policy of generous reconciliation. His assassination in 1865 was the first presidential assassination in U.S. history and made him a martyr for the ideal of national unity.

Lincoln 1809 to 1854

Early life

Abraham Lincoln was born on February 12, 1809, to Thomas Lincoln and Nancy Hanks, two uneducated farmers, in a one-room log cabin on the Template:Convert Sinking Spring Farm, in southeast Hardin County, Kentucky (now part of LaRue County).

For some time, Thomas Lincoln, Abraham's father, was a respected and relatively affluent citizen of the Kentucky backcountry. He had purchased the Sinking Spring Farm in December of 1808 for $200 cash and assumption of a debt.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000007-QINU3UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000008-QINU The family belonged to a [[Hard-shell Baptists|Hardshell Baptist]] church, although Abraham himself never joined their church, or any other church for that matter. In 1816, the Lincoln family was forced to make a new start in [[Perry County, Indiana|Perry County]] (now in [[Spencer County, Indiana|Spencer County]]), Indiana. He later noted that this move was "partly on account of slavery," and partly because of difficulties with land deeds in Kentucky: Unlike land in the [[Northwest Territory]], Kentucky never had a proper U.S. survey, and farmers often had difficulties proving title to their property. When Lincoln was nine, his mother, then thirty-four years old, died of [[milk sickness]]. Soon afterwards, his father remarried to [[Sarah Bush Lincoln|Sarah Bush Johnston]]. Lincoln was affectionate toward his stepmother, whom he would call "Mother" for the rest of his life, but he was distant from his father.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000000A-QINU4UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000000B-QINU In 1830, after more economic and land-title difficulties in Indiana, the family settled on public landUNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000000D-QINU5UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000000E-QINU in [[Macon County, Illinois]]. The following winter was desolate and especially brutal, and the family considered moving back to Indiana. The following year, when his father relocated the family to a [[Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site|new homestead]] in [[Coles County, Illinois]], twenty-two-year-old Lincoln struck out on his own, canoeing down the [[Sangamon River]] to the village of [[New Salem, Menard County, Illinois|New Salem]] in [[Sangamon County, Illinois|Sangamon County]].[[:Template:Cn]] Later that year, hired by New Salem businessman [[Denton Offutt]] and accompanied by friends, he took goods from New Salem to [[New Orleans, Louisiana|New Orleans]] via flatboat on the Sangamon, [[Illinois River|Illinois]] and [[Mississippi River|Mississippi]] rivers. Lincoln's formal education consisted of about 18 months of schooling, but he was largely self-educated and an avid reader. He was also a talented local wrestler and skilled with an axe.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000010-QINU6UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000011-QINU Lincoln avoided hunting and fishing because he did not like killing animals, even for food.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000013-QINU7UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000014-QINU At 6 foot 4 inches (1.93m), he was unusually tall, as well as strong. ===Early political career=== [[Image:Abe Lincoln young.jpg|thumb|200px|left|Young Abraham Lincoln]] Lincoln began his political career in 1832, at age 23, with an unsuccessful campaign for the [[Illinois General Assembly]], as a member of the [[Whig Party (United States)|Whig Party]]. The centerpiece of his platform was the undertaking of navigational improvements on the [[Beardstown and Sangamon Canal|Sangamon River]]. He believed that this would attract steamboat traffic, which would allow the sparsely populated, poorer areas along the river to flourish. He was elected captain of an Illinois [[militia]] company drawn from New Salem during the [[Black Hawk War]], and later wrote that he had not had "any such success in life which gave him so much satisfaction."UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000016-QINU8UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000017-QINU For several months, Lincoln ran a small store in New Salem. In 1834, he won election to the state legislature, and, after coming across the ''[[Commentaries on the Laws of England]]'', began to teach himself law. [[Admission to the bar in the United States|Admitted to the bar]] in 1837, he moved to [[Springfield, Illinois]], that same year and began to practice law with [[John T. Stuart]]. With a reputation as a formidable adversary during cross-examinations and in his closing arguments, Lincoln became one of the most respected and successful lawyers in Illinois and grew steadily more prosperous.[[:Template:Fix]] He served four successive terms in the [[Illinois House of Representatives]] as a representative from Sangamon County, and became a leader of the Illinois Whig party. In 1837, he made his first protest against slavery in the Illinois House, stating that the institution was "founded on both injustice and bad policy."UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000019-QINU9UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000001A-QINU It was also in this same year that Lincoln met [[Joshua Fry Speed]], who would become his most intimate friend. Lincoln wrote a series of anonymous letters, published in 1842 in the ''[[The State Journal-Register|Sangamon Journal]]'', mocking State Auditor and prominent Democrat [[James Shields]]. Two years later, Lincoln entered law practice with [[William Herndon (lawyer)|William Herndon]], a fellow Whig. In 1854, both men joined the fledgling [[History of the United States Republican Party|Republican Party]]. Following Lincoln's death, Herndon began collecting stories about Lincoln and published them in ''Herndon's Lincoln''. [[Image:MTLincoln.jpg|thumb|right|200px| The first photograph ever taken of [[Mary Todd Lincoln|Mary Lincoln]], a daguerreotype by Shepherd in 1846.]] ===Family=== On [[November 4]] [[1842]] Lincoln married [[Mary Todd Lincoln|Mary Todd]], daughter of a prominent slave-owning family from Kentucky. The couple had four sons. [[Robert Todd Lincoln]] was born in Springfield, Illinois on [[1 August]], [[1843]]. Their only child to survive into adulthood, young Robert attended [[Phillips Exeter Academy]] and [[Harvard College]]. The other Lincoln children were born in Springfield, Illinois, and died either during childhood or their teen years. [[Edward Baker Lincoln]] was born on [[10 March]], [[1846]], and died on [[1 February]], [[1850]], also in Springfield. [[William Wallace Lincoln|William "Willie" Wallace Lincoln]] was born on [[21 December]], [[1850]], and died on [[20 February]], [[1862]] in [[Washington, D.C.]], during President Lincoln's first term. [[Tad Lincoln|Thomas "Tad" Lincoln]] was born on [[4 April]], [[1853]], and died on [[16 July]], [[1871]] in [[Chicago]]. [[Image:Abelincoln1846.jpeg|thumb|left|220px|The first photograph ever taken of Abraham Lincoln, a [[daguerreotype]] taken by Shepherd in 1846.]] ===Legislative activity=== A Whig and an admirer of party leader [[Henry Clay]], Lincoln was [[United States House elections, 1846|elected]] to a term in the [[United States House of Representatives|U.S. House of Representatives]] in 1846. As a freshman House member, he was not a particularly powerful or influential figure. However, he spoke out against the [[Mexican-American War]], which he attributed to [[James K. Polk|President Polk's]] desire for "military glory" and challenged the President's claims regarding the Texas boundary and offered [[Spot Resolutions]], demanding to know on what "spot" on US soil that blood was first spilt.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000001C-QINU10UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000001D-QINU Lincoln later damaged his political reputation with a speech in which he declared, "God of Heaven has forgotten to defend the weak and innocent, and permitted the strong band of murderers and demons from hell to kill men, women, and children, and lay waste and pillage the land of the just." Two weeks later, President Polk sent a peace treaty to Congress. While no one in Washington paid any attention to Lincoln, the Democrats orchestrated angry outbursts from across his district, where the war was popular and many had volunteered. Warned by his law partner, [[William Herndon (lawyer)|William Herndon]], that the damage was mounting and irreparable, Lincoln decided not to run for reelection. His statements were not easily forgotten, and would haunt him during the [[American Civil War|Civil War]]. These statements were also held against him when he applied for a position in the new Taylor administration. Instead, Taylor's people offered Lincoln various positions in the remote [[Oregon Territory]], primarily the [[List of Governors of Oregon|governorship]]. Acceptance of this offer would have ended his career in the rapidly growing state of Illinois, so Lincoln declined the position. Returning to Springfield, Lincoln gave up politics for several years and turned his energies to his law practice. ===Prairie lawyer=== [[Image:Piatt and DeWitt County Lincoln marker wide.jpg|thumb|In the 1920s, historical markers were placed at the county lines along the route Lincoln traveled in the eighth judicial district. This example is on the border of [[Piatt County, Illinois|Piatt]] and [[DeWitt County, Illinois|DeWitt counties]].]] By the mid-1850s, Lincoln's caseload focused largely on the competing transportation interests of [[Barge|river barges]] and [[Rail transport|railroads]]. In one prominent 1851 case, he represented the [[Alton Railroad|Alton & Sangamon Railroad]] in a dispute with a shareholder, James A. Barret. Barret had refused to pay the balance on his pledge to the railroad on the grounds that it had changed its originally planned route. Lincoln argued that as a matter of law a corporation is not bound by its original charter when that charter can be amended in the public interest, that the newer route proposed by Alton & Sangamon was superior and less expensive, and that accordingly, the corporation had a right to sue Barret for his delinquent payment. He won this case, and the decision by the [[Supreme Court of Illinois|Illinois Supreme Court]] was eventually cited by several other courts throughout the United States.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000001F-QINU11UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000020-QINU The civil case which won Lincoln fame as a lawyer was the landmark [[Hurd v. Rock Island Bridge Company]]. America's expansion west, which Lincoln strongly supported, was seen as an economic threat to the river trade, which ran north-to-south, primarily on the [[Mississippi river]]. In 1856 a steamboat collided with a bridge, built by the [[Rock Island Railroad]], between [[Rock Island, Illinois]], and [[Davenport, Iowa]], the first railroad bridge to span the Mississippi. The steamboat owner sued for damages, claiming the bridge was a hazard to navigation. Lincoln argued in court for the railroad and won, removing a costly impediment to western expansion by establishing the right of land routes to bridge waterways. Possibly the most notable criminal trial of Lincoln's career as a lawyer came in 1858, when he defended [[William "Duff" Armstrong]], who had been charged with murder. The case became famous for Lincoln's use of [[judicial notice]] — a rare tactic at that time — to show that an eyewitness had lied on the stand. After the witness testified to having seen the crime by moonlight, Lincoln produced a ''[[Farmers' Almanac]]'' to show that the [[moon]] on that date was at such a low angle that it could not have provided enough illumination to see anything clearly. Based almost entirely on this evidence, Armstrong was acquitted.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000022-QINU12UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000023-QINU Lincoln was involved in more than 5,100 cases in Illinois alone during his 23-year legal career. Though many of these cases involved little more than filing a writ, others were more substantial and quite involved. Lincoln and his partners appeared before the Illinois State Supreme Court more than 400 times. ==Republican politics 1854–1860== Lincoln returned to politics in response to the [[Kansas-Nebraska Act]] (1854), which expressly repealed the limits on slavery's extent as determined by the [[Missouri Compromise]] (1820). Illinois Democrat [[Stephen A. Douglas]], the most powerful man in the Senate, proposed [[popular sovereignty]] as the solution to the slavery impasse, and incorporated it into the Kansas-Nebraska Act. Douglas argued that in a democracy the people should have the right to decide whether or not to allow slavery in their territory, rather than have such a decision imposed on them by Congress.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000025-QINU13UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000026-QINU In the [[October 16]] [[1854]], "[[Abraham Lincoln Peoria speech|Peoria Speech]]",[http://www.mrlincolnandfreedom.org/inside.asp?ID=11&subjectID=2], Lincoln first stood out among the other [[Free Soil Party|free soil]] orators of the day:[http://www.lincolnatpeoria.com/] {| style="margin:auto; border-collapse:collapse; border-style:none; background-color:transparent; " class="cquote" | width="20" valign="top" style="color:#B2B7F2;font-size:35px;font-family:'Times New Roman',serif;font-weight:bold;text-align:left;padding:10px 10px;" | “ | valign="top" style="padding:4px 10px;" | [The Act has a] ''declared'' indifference, but as I must think, covert ''real'' zeal for the spread of slavery, I cannot but hate it. I hate it because of the monstrous injustice of slavery itself. I hate it because it deprives our republican example of its just influence in the world — enables the enemies of free institutions, with plausibility, to taunt us as hypocrites — causes the real friends of freedom to doubt our sincerity, and especially because it forces so many really good men amongst ourselves into an open war with the very fundamental principles of civil liberty — criticizing the Declaration of Independence, and insisting that there is no right principle of action but ''self-interest''.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000028-QINU14UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000029-QINU | width="20" valign="bottom" style="color:#B2B7F2;font-size:36px;font-family:'Times New Roman',serif;font-weight:bold;text-align:right;padding:10px 10px;" | ” |- |} Drawing on remnants of the old Whig, Free Soil, Liberty and Democratic parties, he was instrumental in forming the new Republican Party. In a stirring campaign, the Republicans carried Illinois in 1854 and elected a senator. Lincoln was the obvious choice, but to keep the new party balanced he allowed the election to go to an ex-Democrat [[Lyman Trumbull]]. In 1857-58, Douglas broke with President [[James Buchanan|Buchanan]], leading to a fight for control of the Democratic Party. Some eastern Republicans even favored the reelection of Douglas in 1858, since he had led the opposition to the [[Lecompton Constitution]], which would have admitted Kansas as a [[slave state]]. Accepting the Republican nomination for Senate in 1858, Lincoln delivered his famous speech: "'A house divided against itself cannot stand.'([[Gospel of Mark|Mark]] 3:25) I believe this government cannot endure permanently half slave and half free. I do not expect the Union to be dissolved — I do not expect the house to fall — but I do expect it will cease to be divided. It will become all one thing, or all the other."UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000002B-QINU15UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000002C-QINU The speech created an evocative image of the danger of disunion caused by the slavery debate, and rallied Republicans across the north. The 1858 campaign featured the [[Lincoln-Douglas debates of 1858|Lincoln-Douglas debates]], a nationally famous contest on slavery. Lincoln warned that the "[[The Slave Power|Slave Power]]" was threatening the values of republicanism, while Douglas emphasized the supremacy of democracy, as set forth in his [[Freeport Doctrine]], which said that local settlers should be free to choose whether to allow slavery or not. Though the Republican legislative candidates won more popular votes, the Democrats won more seats, and the legislature reelected Douglas to the Senate. Nevertheless, Lincoln's eloquence transformed him into a national political star. During the debates of 1858, the issue of race was often discussed. During a time period when few believed in racial egalitarianism, Stephen Douglas informed the crowds, "If you desire Negro citizenship… if you desire them to vote on an equality with yourselves… then support Mr. Lincoln and the Black Republican party, who are in favor of the citizenship of the negro."UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000002E-QINU16UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000002F-QINU Lincoln countered that he was "not in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races."UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000031-QINU17UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000032-QINU His opposition to slavery was opposition to the [[Slave Power]], though this would change during the course of the Civil War.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000034-QINU18UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000035-QINU On May 9-10, 1860, the Illinois Republican State Convention was held in [[Decatur, Illinois|Decatur]]. At this convention, Lincoln received his first endorsement to run for the presidency. == Election of 1860 == :

''Main article: [[United States presidential election, 1860|United States presidential election, 1860]]''

[[Image:The Rail Candidate.jpg|thumb|340px|left|"The Rail Candidate," Lincoln's 1860 candidacy is held up by slavery issue (slave on left) and party organization (''New York Tribune'' editor [[Horace Greeley]] on right)]] [[Image:1860.jpg|thumb|right|220px|Photo of Lincoln taken [[February 27]], [[1860]] in [[New York City]] by [[Mathew Brady]], the day of his famous [[Cooper Union speech]].]] Entering the presidential nomination process as a distinct underdog, Lincoln was eventually chosen as the Republican candidate for the 1860 election for several reasons. His expressed views on slavery were seen as more moderate than those of rivals [[William H. Seward]] and [[Salmon P. Chase]]. His "Western" origins also appealed to the newer states: other contenders, especially those with more governmental experience, had acquired enemies within the party and were weak in the critical western states, while Lincoln was perceived as a moderate who could win the West. Most Republicans agreed with Lincoln that the North was the aggrieved party as the Slave Power tightened its grasp on the national government. Yet despite his Southern connections (his in-laws owned slaves), Lincoln misunderstood the depth of the revolution underway in the South and the emergence of Southern nationalism. Throughout the 1850s he denied that there would ever be a civil war, and his supporters repeatedly rejected claims that his election would incite secession.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000037-QINU19UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000038-QINU Throughout the election, Lincoln did not campaign or give speeches. This was handled by the state and county Republican organizations, who used the latest techniques to sustain party enthusiasm and thus obtain high turnout. There was little effort to convert non-Republicans, and there was virtually no campaigning in the South except for a few border cities such as [[St. Louis, Missouri]], and [[Wheeling, West Virginia|Wheeling, Virginia]]; indeed, the party did not even run a slate in most of the South. In the North, there were thousands of Republican speakers, tons of campaign posters and leaflets, and thousands of newspaper editorials. These focused first on the party platform, and second on Lincoln's life story, making the most of his boyhood poverty, his pioneer background, his native genius, and his rise from obscurity. His nicknames, "Honest Abe" and "the Rail-Splitter," were exploited to the full. The goal was to emphasize the superior power of "free labor," whereby a common farm boy could work his way to the top by his own efforts.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000003A-QINU20UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000003B-QINU On [[November 6]], [[1860]], Lincoln was elected as the 16th President of the United States, beating Democrat Stephen A. Douglas, [[John C. Breckinridge]] of the Southern Democrats, and [[John Bell (Tennessee politician)|John Bell]] of the new [[Constitutional Union Party (United States)|Constitutional Union Party]]. He was the first Republican president, winning entirely on the strength of his support in the North: he was not even on the ballot in nine states in the South, and won only 2 of 996 counties in the other Southern states. Lincoln gained 1,865,908 votes (39.9% of the total), for 180 electoral votes; Douglas, 1,380,202 (29.5%) for 12 electoral votes; Breckenridge, 848,019 (18.1%) for 72 electoral votes; and Bell, 590,901 (12.5%) for 39 electoral votes. There were [[Electoral fusion|fusion tickets]] in some states, but even if his opponents had combined in every state, Lincoln had a majority vote in all but two of the states in which he won the electoral votes and would still have won the electoral college and the election. ==Civil War== ===Secession winter 1860–1861=== As Lincoln's election became more likely, secessionists made it clear that their states would leave the Union. [[South Carolina]] took the lead, followed by six other cotton-growing states in the deep South. The upper South ([[Delaware]], [[Maryland]], [[Virginia]], [[North Carolina]], [[Tennessee]], [[Kentucky]], [[Missouri]], and [[Arkansas]]) listened to and rejected the secessionist appeal. They decided to stay in the Union, though they warned Lincoln that they would not support an invasion through their territory. The seven Confederate states seceded before Lincoln took office, declaring themselves to be a new nation, the [[Confederate States of America]]. President Buchanan and President-elect Lincoln refused to recognize the Confederacy. President-elect Lincoln evaded possible assassins in Baltimore, and on [[February 23]], [[1861]], arrived in disguise in Washington, D.C. At his inauguration on [[March 4]], [[1861]], the [[German American]] [[Turners]] formed Lincoln's bodyguard; and a sizable garrison of federal troops was also present, ready to protect the capital from Confederate invasion and local insurrection. [[Image:Abraham lincoln inauguration 1861.jpg|thumb|left|300px|Photograph showing the [[March 4]], [[1861]], inauguration of Abraham Lincoln in front of [[United States Capitol]].]] In his [[Lincoln's First Inaugural|First Inaugural]] Address, Lincoln declared, "I hold that in contemplation of universal law and of the Constitution the Union of these States is perpetual. Perpetuity is implied, if not expressed, in the fundamental law of all national governments," arguing further that the purpose of the [[United States Constitution]] was "to form a more perfect union" than the [[Articles of Confederation]] which were ''explicitly'' perpetual, thus the Constitution too was perpetual. He asked rhetorically that even were the Constitution a simple contract, would it not require the agreement of all parties to rescind it? Also in his inaugural address, in a final attempt to reunite the states and prevent the looming war, Lincoln supported the pending [[Corwin Amendment]] to the Constitution, which had already passed Congress. This amendment, which explicitly protected slavery in those states in which it existed, was designed to appeal not to the Confederacy but to the critical border states. At the same time, Lincoln adamantly opposed the [[Crittenden Compromise]], which would have permitted slavery in the territories. Despite support for the Crittenden compromise among some prominent Republicans (including [[William H. Seward|William Seward]]), Lincoln denounced it saying that it "would amount to a perpetual covenant of war against every people, tribe, and state owning a foot of land between here and [[Tierra del Fuego]]." By the time Lincoln took office, the Confederacy was an established fact, and no leaders of the insurrection proposed rejoining the Union on any terms. No compromise was found because a compromise was deemed virtually impossible. Buchanan might have allowed the southern states to secede, and some Republicans recommended that. However, conservative Democratic nationalists, such as [[Jeremiah S. Black]], [[Joseph Holt]], and [[Edwin M. Stanton]] had taken control of Buchanan's cabinet around [[January 1]], [[1861]], and refused to accept secession. Lincoln and nearly every Republican leader adopted this position by March 1861: the Union could not be dismantled. However, as a strict follower of the constitution, Lincoln refused to take any action against the South unless the Unionists themselves were attacked first. This finally happened in April 1861. Historian [[Allan Nevins]] argues that Lincoln made three miscalculations in believing that he could preserve the Union, hold government property, and still avoid war. He "temporarily underrated the gravity of the crisis," overestimated the strength of Unionist sentiment in the South and border states, and misunderstood the conditional support of Unionists in the border states.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000003D-QINU21UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000003E-QINU ===Fighting begins: 1861–1862=== :

''Main article: [[American Civil War|American Civil War]]''

In April 1861, after Union troops at [[Battle of Fort Sumter|Fort Sumter]] were fired upon and forced to surrender, Lincoln called on the governors of every state to send detachments totaling 75,000 troops to recapture forts, protect the capital, and "preserve the Union," which in his view still existed intact despite the actions of the seceding states. [[Virginia]], which had repeatedly warned Lincoln that it would not allow an invasion of its territory or join an attack on another state, responded by seceding, along with [[North Carolina]], [[Tennessee]], and [[Arkansas]]. The slave states of [[Missouri]], [[Kentucky]], [[Maryland]], and [[Delaware]] did not secede, and Lincoln urgently negotiated with state leaders there, promising not to interfere with slavery. After the fighting started, he had rebel leaders arrested in all the border areas (especially in Maryland) and held in military prisons without trial. Over 18,000 were arrested, though none were executed. One, [[Clement Vallandigham]], was exiled; but all of the remainder were released, usually after two or three months (''see'': [[Ex parte Merryman]]). ===Emancipation Proclamation=== :

''Main articles: [[Abraham Lincoln on slavery|Abraham Lincoln on slavery]] and [[Emancipation Proclamation|Emancipation Proclamation]]''

[[:Template:Emancipation Proclamation draft]] In July 1862, Congress moved to free the slaves by passing the Second Confiscation Act. The goal was to weaken the rebellion, which was led and controlled by slave owners. While it did not abolish the legal institution of slavery (the [[Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution|Thirteenth Amendment]] did that), the Act showed that Lincoln had the support of Congress in liberating slaves owned by rebels. This new law was implemented with Lincoln's "Emancipation Proclamation." Lincoln is well known for ending slavery in the United States. In 1861 – 1862, however, he made it clear that the North was fighting the war to preserve the Union, not to abolish slavery. Freeing the slaves became, in late 1862, a war measure to weaken the rebellion by destroying the economic base of its leadership class. Abolitionists criticized Lincoln for his sluggishness over slavery ''per se'', but on [[August 22]], [[1862]], Lincoln explained: {| style="margin:auto; border-collapse:collapse; border-style:none; background-color:transparent; " class="cquote" | width="20" valign="top" style="color:#B2B7F2;font-size:35px;font-family:'Times New Roman',serif;font-weight:bold;text-align:left;padding:10px 10px;" | “ | valign="top" style="padding:4px 10px;" | I would save the Union. I would save it the shortest way under the Constitution. The sooner the national authority can be restored; the nearer the Union will be "the Union as it was." ... My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000040-QINU22UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000041-QINU | width="20" valign="bottom" style="color:#B2B7F2;font-size:36px;font-family:'Times New Roman',serif;font-weight:bold;text-align:right;padding:10px 10px;" | ” |- |} The [[Emancipation Proclamation]], announced on [[September 22]] and put into effect on [[January 1]], [[1863]], freed slaves in territories not under Union control. As Union armies advanced south, more slaves were liberated until all of them in Confederate hands (over three million) were freed. Lincoln later said: "I never, in my life, felt more certain that I was doing right, than I do in signing this paper." The proclamation made the abolition of slavery in the rebel states an official war goal. Lincoln then threw his energies into passage of the Thirteenth Amendment to permanently abolish slavery throughout the nation.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000043-QINU23UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000044-QINU In September 1862, thirteen northern governors met in [[Altoona, Pennsylvania]], at the Loyal [[War Governors' Conference]] to discuss the Proclamation and Union war effort. In the end, the state executives fully supported the president's Proclamation and also suggested the removal of General [[George B. McClellan]] as commander of the Union's [[Army of the Potomac]].UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000046-QINU24UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000047-QINU For some time, Lincoln continued earlier plans to set up [[Abraham Lincoln on slavery#Colonization|colonies]] for the newly freed slaves. He commented favorably on colonization in the Emancipation Proclamation, but all attempts at such a massive undertaking failed. As [[Frederick Douglass]] observed, Lincoln was, "The first great man that I talked with in the United States freely who in no single instance reminded me of the difference between himself and myself, of the difference of color."UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000049-QINU25UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000004A-QINU ===Gettysburg Address=== :

''Main article: [[Gettysburg Address|Gettysburg Address]]''

In spite of the fact that Gettysburg was a Union victory, it was also the bloodiest battle of the war and caused a great blow to Lincoln's war effort. As the Union Army decreased in numbers due to death, more soldiers were needed to replace the ranks. Lincoln's 1863 drafts were considered "odious" among many in the north, particularly immigrants. The [[New York Draft Riots]] of July, 1863 were the most notable manifestation of this discontent. Writing to Lincoln in September 1863, the Pennsylvania governor, [[Andrew Curtin]], warned that political sentiments were turning against Lincoln and the war effort: {| style="margin:auto; border-collapse:collapse; border-style:none; background-color:transparent; " class="cquote" | width="20" valign="top" style="color:#B2B7F2;font-size:35px;font-family:'Times New Roman',serif;font-weight:bold;text-align:left;padding:10px 10px;" | “ | valign="top" style="padding:4px 10px;" | If the election were to occur now, the result would be extremely doubtful, and although most of our discreet friends are sanguine of the result, my impression is, the chances would be against us. The draft is very odious in the State... the Democratic leaders have succeeded in exciting prejudice and passion, and have infused their poison into the minds of the people to a very large extent, and the changes are against us.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000004C-QINU26UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000004D-QINU | width="20" valign="bottom" style="color:#B2B7F2;font-size:36px;font-family:'Times New Roman',serif;font-weight:bold;text-align:right;padding:10px 10px;" | ” |- |} By November 1863, Lincoln was quite sensible of the fact that he desperately needed to do or say something that would revive the Union's spirits toward the war effort. Operating in an era without TV, radio, or internet, Lincoln would have to get his message out via the press. His presence at the dedication of the Gettysburg cemetery would certainly draw reporters from around the country, and by means of their reports, Lincoln could speak to the nation. Hence, his decision to go to Gettysburg and urge the Union to highly resolve that the dead there "shall not have died in vain" was Lincoln's way of saying that if the [[Copperheads|Copperhead]] peace democrats get their way, then the men who there gave the "last full measure of devotion" will have done so for no reason at all. In the [[Gettysburg Address]], Lincoln was proposing this question: what would these men who died for this cause want us to do--quit now or finish the job? How the country answered this question would determine the 1864 election. The political power of Lincoln's rhetoric was undeniable. Even a Copperhead with the misfortune of [[Letter to Mrs. Bixby|Mrs. Bixby]] would be moved by Lincoln's call to "be here dedicated to the unfinished work" that men like her sons had thus far so nobly advanced. Perhaps the most important political consequence of the power of the Gettysburg Address is that Lincoln indeed won the election in 1864, thus assuring that the war would continue until the victory had been achieved. ===1864 election and second inauguration=== :

''Main article: [[United States presidential election, 1864|United States presidential election, 1864]]''

After Union victories at [[Battle of Gettysburg|Gettysburg]], [[Battle of Vicksburg|Vicksburg]] and [[Third Battle of Chattanooga|Chattanooga]] in 1863, overall victory seemed at hand, and Lincoln promoted [[Ulysses S. Grant]] General-in-Chief ( [[March 12]], [[1864]]). When the spring campaigns turned into bloody stalemates, Lincoln supported Grant's strategy of wearing down [[Robert E. Lee|Lee's]] Confederate army at the cost of heavy Union casualties. With an election looming, he easily defeated efforts to deny his renomination. At the Convention, the Republican Party selected [[Andrew Johnson]], a [[War Democrats|War Democrat]] from the Southern state of Tennessee, as his running mate in order to form a broader coalition. They ran on the new [[National Union Party (United States)|Union Party]] ticket uniting Republicans and War Democrats.[[Image:Lincoln second.jpg|thumb|right|300px|This photograph of Lincoln delivering his second inaugural address is the only known photograph of Lincoln giving a speech. Lincoln stands in the center, with papers in his hand. [[John Wilkes Booth]] is visible in the photograph, in the top row right of center (White, ''The Eloquent President'').]] Nevertheless, Republicans across the country feared that Lincoln would be defeated. Acknowledging this fear, Lincoln wrote and signed a pledge that, if he should lose the election, he would nonetheless defeat the Confederacy by an all-out military effort before turning over the White House:UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-0000004F-QINU27UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000050-QINU {| style="margin:auto; border-collapse:collapse; border-style:none; background-color:transparent; " class="cquote" | width="20" valign="top" style="color:#B2B7F2;font-size:35px;font-family:'Times New Roman',serif;font-weight:bold;text-align:left;padding:10px 10px;" | “ | valign="top" style="padding:4px 10px;" | This morning, as for some days past, it seems exceedingly probable that this Administration will not be re-elected. Then it will be my duty to so co-operate with the President elect, as to save the Union between the election and the inauguration; as he will have secured his election on such ground that he cannot possibly save it afterwards.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000052-QINU28UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000053-QINU | width="20" valign="bottom" style="color:#B2B7F2;font-size:36px;font-family:'Times New Roman',serif;font-weight:bold;text-align:right;padding:10px 10px;" | ” |- |} Lincoln did not show the pledge to his cabinet, but asked them to sign the sealed envelope. While the Democratic platform followed the [[Copperheads (politics)|Peace wing]] of the party and called the war a "failure," their candidate, General [[George B. McClellan]], supported the war and repudiated the platform. Lincoln provided Grant with new replacements and mobilized his party to support Grant and win local support for the war effort. [[William Tecumseh Sherman|Sherman]]'s capture of [[Atlanta, Georgia|Atlanta]] in September ended defeatist jitters; the Democratic Party was deeply split, with some leaders and most soldiers openly for Lincoln; the Union party was united and energized, and Lincoln was easily reelected in a landslide. He won all but two states, capturing 212 of 233 electoral votes. On [[March 4]] [[1865]], Lincoln delivered his [[Lincoln's second inaugural address|second inaugural address]], his favorite of all his speeches. At this time, a victory over the rebels was at hand, slavery was dead, and Lincoln was looking to the future. {| style="margin:auto; border-collapse:collapse; border-style:none; background-color:transparent; " class="cquote" | width="20" valign="top" style="color:#B2B7F2;font-size:35px;font-family:'Times New Roman',serif;font-weight:bold;text-align:left;padding:10px 10px;" | “ | valign="top" style="padding:4px 10px;" | Fondly do we hope — fervently do we pray — that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue, until all the wealth piled by the bond-man's two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash, shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said "the judgments of the Lord, are true and righteous altogether." With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan — to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000055-QINU29UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000056-QINU | width="20" valign="bottom" style="color:#B2B7F2;font-size:36px;font-family:'Times New Roman',serif;font-weight:bold;text-align:right;padding:10px 10px;" | ” |- |} ===Conducting the war effort=== [[Image:RunningtheMachine-LincAdmin.jpg|thumb|right|300px|“Running the ‘Machine’”
An 1864 cartoon featuring Lincoln, [[William P. Fessenden|William Fessenden]], [[Edwin M. Stanton|Edwin Stanton]], [[William H. Seward|William Seward]] and [[Gideon Welles]] takes a swing at the Lincoln administration]] The war was a source of constant frustration for the president, and occupied nearly all of his time. He had a contentious relationship with General [[George B. McClellan|McClellan]], who became general-in-chief of all the Union armies in the wake of the embarrassing Union defeat at the [[First Battle of Bull Run]] and after the retirement of [[Winfield Scott]] in late 1861. Despite his inexperience in military affairs, Lincoln wanted to take an active part in determining war strategy. His priorities were twofold: to ensure that Washington, D.C., was well defended; and to conduct an aggressive war effort in the hope of ending the war quickly and appeasing the Northern public and press. McClellan, a youthful [[United States Military Academy|West Point]] graduate and railroad executive called back to active military service, took a more cautious approach. He took several months to plan and execute his [[Peninsula Campaign]], with the objective of capturing [[Richmond, Virginia|Richmond]] by moving the [[Army of the Potomac]] by boat to the [[Virginia Peninsula|peninsula]] between the [[James River (Virginia)|James]] and [[York River (Virginia)|York Rivers]]. McClellan's delay irritated Lincoln, as did his insistence that no troops were needed to defend Washington, D.C. Lincoln insisted on holding some of McClellan's troops to defend the capital, a decision McClellan blamed for the ultimate failure of the Peninsula Campaign. McClellan, a lifelong [[Democratic Party (United States)|Democrat]] who was temperamentally conservative, was relieved as general-in-chief after releasing his ''Harrison's Landing Letter'', where he offered unsolicited political advice to Lincoln urging caution in the war effort. McClellan's letter incensed Radical Republicans, who successfully pressured Lincoln to appoint [[John Pope (military officer)|John Pope]], a Republican, as head of the new [[Army of Virginia]]. Pope complied with Lincoln's strategic desire to move toward Richmond from the north, thus protecting the capital from attack. But Pope was soundly defeated at the [[Second Battle of Bull Run]] in the summer of 1862, forcing the Army of the Potomac to defend Washington for a second time. In response to his failure, Pope was sent to Minnesota to fight the [[Sioux]]. [[Image:A&TLincoln.jpg|thumb|left|230px|An 1864 [[Mathew Brady]] photo depicts President Lincoln reading a book with his youngest son, [[Tad Lincoln|Tad]]]] [[Image:PinkertonLincolnMcClernand.jpg|thumb|right|200px|Lincoln, in [[top hat]], with [[Allan Pinkerton]] and Gen. [[John Alexander McClernand]] at Antietam.]]Panicked by Lee's invasion of Maryland, Lincoln restored McClellan to command of all forces around Washington in time for the [[Battle of Antietam]] (September 1862). The ensuing Union victory enabled Lincoln to release his Emancipation Proclamation, but he relieved McClellan of his command shortly after the 1862 midterm elections and appointed Republican [[Ambrose Burnside]] to head the Army of the Potomac. Burnside had promised to follow through on Lincoln's strategic vision for a strong offensive against Lee and Richmond. After Burnside was stunningly defeated at [[Battle of Fredericksburg|Fredericksburg]], [[Joseph Hooker]] was given the command, despite his idle talk about the necessity for a military dictator to win the war and a past history of criticizing his commanders.UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000058-QINU30UNIQ5d2d686e592d0c25-nowiki-00000059-QINU Hooker was routed by Lee at the [[Battle of Chancellorsville]] (May 1863), and relieved of command early in the subsequent [[Gettysburg Campaign]] replaced by [[George Meade]]. After the Union victory at Gettysburg, Meade's failure to pursue Lee and months of inactivity for the Army of the Potomac persuaded Lincoln to bring in a western general, [[Ulysses S. Grant]]. Grant already had a solid string of victories in the Western Theater, including the battles of Vicksburg and [[Third Battle of Chattanooga|Chattanooga]]. Responding to criticism of Grant, Lincoln was quoted as saying, "I cannot spare this man. He fights." Grant waged his bloody [[Overland Campaign]] in 1864 with a strategy of a [[attrition warfare|war of attrition]], characterized by high Union losses at battles such as the [[Battle of the Wilderness|Wilderness]] and [[Battle of Cold Harbor|Cold Harbor]], but by proportionately higher Confederate losses. His invasion campaign eventually bottled Lee up in the [[Siege of Petersburg]], so that Grant could take Richmond, and bring the war to a close in the spring of 1865. Lincoln authorized Grant to target civilians and infrastructure, hoping to destroy the South's morale and weaken its economic ability to continue fighting. This allowed Generals [[William Tecumseh Sherman|Sherman]] and [[Philip Sheridan|Sheridan]] to destroy farms and towns in the [[Shenandoah Valley]], [[Georgia (U.S. state)|Georgia]], and South Carolina. The damage caused by [[Sherman's March to the Sea]] through Georgia totaled in excess of $100 million by Sherman's own estimate.[31]

Lincoln had a star-crossed record as a military leader, possessing a keen understanding of strategic points (such as the Mississippi River and the fortress city of Vicksburg) and the importance of defeating the enemy's army, rather than simply capturing cities. He had, however, limited success in motivating his commanders to adopt his strategies until late 1863, when he found a man who shared his vision of the war in Ulysses S. Grant. Only then could he insist on using African American troops and relentlessly pursue a series of coordinated offensives in multiple theaters.

Throughout the war, Lincoln showed a keen curiosity with the military campaigns. He spent hours at the War Department telegraph office, reading dispatches from his generals. He visited battle sites frequently, and seemed fascinated by watching scenes of war. During Jubal Anderson Early's raid on Washington, D.C. in 1864, Lincoln had to be told to duck to avoid being shot while observing the battle.

Reconstruction

Reconstruction began during the war as Lincoln and his associates pondered questions of how to reintegrate the Southern states and what to do with Confederate leaders and the freed slaves. Lincoln led the "moderates" regarding Reconstructionist policy, and was usually opposed by the Radical Republicans, under Thaddeus Stevens in the House and Charles Sumner and Benjamin Wade in the Senate (though he cooperated with these men on most other issues). Determined to find a course that would reunite the nation and not alienate the South, Lincoln urged that speedy elections under generous terms be held throughout the war in areas behind Union lines. His Amnesty Proclamation of December 8, 1863, offered pardons to those who had not held a Confederate civil office, had not mistreated Union prisoners, and would sign an oath of allegiance.[32] Critical decisions had to be made as state after state was reconquered. Of special importance were Tennessee, where Lincoln appointed Andrew Johnson as governor, and Louisiana, where Lincoln attempted a plan that would restore statehood when 10 percent of the voters agreed to it. The Radicals thought this policy too lenient, and passed their own plan, the Wade-Davis Bill, in 1864. When Lincoln pocket-vetoed the bill, the Radicals retaliated by refusing to seat representatives elected from Louisiana, Arkansas, and Tennessee.[33]

On April 9, 1865, Lee surrendered at Appomattox Court House in Virginia, and the war was effectively over. The other rebel armies surrendered soon after, and there was no subsequent guerrilla warfare. Lincoln went to Richmond to make a public gesture of sitting at Jefferson Davis's own desk, symbolically saying to the nation that the President of the United States held authority over the entire land. He was greeted at the city as a conquering hero by freed slaves, whose sentiments were epitomized by one admirer's quote, "I know I am free for I have seen the face of Father Abraham and have felt him." When a general asked Lincoln how the defeated Confederates should be treated, Lincoln replied, "Let 'em up easy."[34][35]

Home front

Redefining Republicanism

File:Abraham Lincoln half length seated, April 10, 1865.jpg
One of the last photographs of Lincoln, likely taken between February and April 1865

Lincoln's powerful rhetoric defined the issues of the war for the nation, the world, and posterity. His extraordinary command of the English language was evidenced in the Gettysburg Address, a speech dedicating the cemetery at Gettysburg that he delivered on November 19, 1863. The speech defied Lincoln's own prediction that "the world will little note, nor long remember what we say here." Lincoln's second inaugural address is also greatly admired and often quoted. In these speeches, Lincoln articulated better than anyone else the rationale behind the Union cause.

In recent years, historians have stressed Lincoln's use of and redefinition of republican values. As early as the 1850s, a time when most political rhetoric focused on the sanctity of the Constitution, Lincoln shifted emphasis to the Declaration of Independence as the foundation of American political values — what he called the "sheet anchor" of republicanism.[36] The Declaration's emphasis on freedom and equality for all, rather than the Constitution's tolerance of slavers, shifted the debate. As Diggins concludes regarding the highly influential Cooper Union speech, "Lincoln presented Americans a theory of history that offers a profound contribution to the theory and destiny of republicanism itself."[37] His position gained strength because he highlighted the moral basis of republicanism, rather than its legalisms.[38] Nevertheless, in 1861 Lincoln justified the war in terms of legalisms (the Constitution was a contract, and for one party to get out of a contract all the other parties had to agree), and then in terms of the national duty to guarantee a "republican form of government" in every state.[39] That duty was also the principle underlying federal intervention in Reconstruction.

In his Gettysburg Address Lincoln redefined the American nation, arguing that it was born not in 1789 but in 1776, "conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal." He declared that the sacrifices of battle had rededicated the nation to the propositions of democracy and equality, "that this nation shall have a new birth of freedom — and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth." By emphasizing the centrality of the nation, he rebuffed the claims of state sovereignty. While some critics say Lincoln moved too far and too fast,[40] they agree that he dedicated the nation to values that marked "a new founding of the nation."[41]

Civil liberties suspended

During the Civil War, Lincoln appropriated powers no previous President had wielded: he used his war powers to proclaim a blockade, suspended the writ of habeas corpus, spent money without congressional authorization, and imprisoned 18,000 suspected Confederate sympathizers without trial. Nearly all of his actions, although vehemently denounced by the Copperheads, were subsequently upheld by Congress and the Courts.Template:Fix

Domestic measures

Lincoln believed in the Whig theory of the presidency, which left Congress to write the laws while he signed them, vetoing only those bills that threatened his war powers. Thus, he signed the Homestead Act in 1862, making millions of acres of government-held land in the West available for purchase at very low cost. The Morrill Land-Grant Colleges Act, also signed in 1862, provided government grants for agricultural universities in each state. The Pacific Railway Acts of 1862 and 1864 granted federal support for the construction of the United States' First Transcontinental Railroad, which was completed in 1869. Other important legislation involved economic matters, including the first income tax and higher tariffs. Also included was the creation of the system of national banks by the National Banking Acts of 1863, 1864, and 1865, which allowed the creation of a strong national financial system. Congress created and Lincoln approved the Department of Agriculture in 1862, although that institution would not become a Cabinet-level department until 1889.

The Legal Tender Act of 1862 established the United States Note, the first paper currency in United States history. This was done to increase the money supply to pay for fighting the war.

During the war, Lincoln's Treasury Department effectively controlled all cotton trade in the occupied South — the most dramatic incursion of federal controls on the economy.

In 1862, Lincoln sent a senior general, John Pope, to put down the "Sioux Uprising" in Minnesota. Presented with 303 death warrants for convicted Santee Dakota who had massacred innocent farmers, Lincoln affirmed 39 of these for execution (one was later reprieved).

Assassination

Further information: Abraham Lincoln's burial and exhumation
File:The Assassination of President Lincoln - Currier and Ives.png
The assassination of Abraham Lincoln. From left to right: Henry Rathbone, Clara Harris, Mary Todd Lincoln, Abraham Lincoln and John Wilkes Booth

Originally, John Wilkes Booth, a well-known actor and a Confederate spy from Maryland, had formulated a plan to kidnap Lincoln in exchange for the release of Confederate prisoners. After attending an April 11 speech in which Lincoln promoted voting rights for blacks, an incensed Booth changed his plans and determined to assassinate the president.[42] Learning that the President and First Lady, together with the Grants, would be attending Ford's Theatre, he laid his plans, assigning his co-conspirators to assassinate Vice President Andrew Johnson and Secretary of State William H. Seward.

Without his main bodyguard Ward Hill Lamon, to whom he related his famous dream regarding his own assassination, Lincoln left to attend the play Our American Cousin on April 14, 1865. As a lone bodyguard wandered, and Lincoln sat in his state box (Box 7) in the balcony, Booth crept up behind the President and waited for the funniest line of the play, hoping the laughter would muffle the noise of the gunshot. When the laughter began, Booth jumped into the box and aimed a single-shot, round-slug .44 caliber Henry Deringer at his head, firing at point-blank range. Major Henry Rathbone momentarily grappled with Booth but was cut by Booth's knife. Booth then leapt to the stage and shouted "Sic semper tyrannis!" (Latin: "Thus always to tyrants") and escaped, despite a broken leg suffered in the leap.[43] A twelve-day manhunt ensued, in which Booth was chased by Federal agents (under the direction of Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton). He was eventually cornered in a Virginia barn house and shot, dying of his wounds soon after.

An army surgeon, Doctor Charles Leale, initially assessed Lincoln's wound as mortal. The President was taken across the street from the theater to the Petersen House, where he lay in a coma for nine hours before he died. Several physicians attended Lincoln, including U.S. Army Surgeon General Joseph K. Barnes of the Army Medical Museum. Using a probe, Barnes located some fragments of Lincoln's skull and the ball lodged 6 inches (15 cm) inside his brain. Lincoln never regained consciousness and was officially pronounced dead at 7:22:10 a.m. April 15, 1865 at the age of 56. There is some disagreement among historians as to Stanton's words after Lincoln died. All agree that he began "Now he belongs to the..." with some stating he said "ages" while others believe he said "angels."[43] After Lincoln's body was returned to the White House, his body was prepared for his lying in repose in the East Room. He was the first president to be assassinated or to lie in state.

The Army Medical Museum, now named the National Museum of Health and Medicine, has retained in its collection several artifacts relating to the assassination. Currently on display are the bullet that was fired from the Derringer pistol, the probe used by Barnes, pieces of Lincoln's skull and hair, and the surgeon's cuff stained with Lincoln's blood.

File:LincolnTrain.jpeg
Lincoln's funeral train carried his remains, as well as 300 mourners and the casket of his son William, 1,654 miles (2,661 km) to Illinois

Lincoln's body was carried by train in a grand funeral procession through several states on its way back to Illinois.[43] While much of the nation mourned him as the savior of the United States, Copperheads celebrated the death of a man they considered an unconstitutional tyrant. The Lincoln Tomb in Oak Ridge Cemetery in Springfield, is 177 feet (54 m) tall and, by 1874, was surmounted with several bronze statues of Lincoln. To prevent repeated attempts to steal Lincoln's body and hold it for ransom, Robert Todd Lincoln had Lincoln exhumed and reinterred in concrete several feet thick in 1901.

With over 120 photographs taken of him, Lincoln was the most photographed man in the United States up to the time he was assassinated.

Presidential appointments

Administration and cabinet

Lincoln was known for appointing political rivals to high positions in his cabinet to keep in line all factions of his party — and to let them battle each other and not combine against Lincoln. Historians agree that except for Simon Cameron, it was a highly effective group.

File:Al16.jpg
Abraham Lincoln's official White House portrait

Template:Infobox U.S. Cabinet

Supreme Court

Lincoln appointed the following Justices to the Supreme Court of the United States:

Major presidential acts

Signed as President

States admitted to the Union

Religious and philosophical beliefs

Template:See

In March 1860 in a speech in New Haven, Connecticut, Lincoln said, with respect to slavery, “Whenever this question shall be settled, it must be settled on some philosophical basis. No policy that does not rest upon some philosophical public opinion can be permanently maintained." The philosophical basis for Lincoln’s beliefs regarding slavery and other issues of the day require that Lincoln be examined "seriously as a man of ideas." Lincoln was a strong supporter of the American Whig version of liberal capitalism who, more than most politicians of the time, was able to express his ideas within the context of Nineteenth Century religious beliefs.[44]

There were few people who strongly or directly influenced Lincoln’s moral and intellectual development and perspectives. There was no teacher, mentor, church leader, community leader, or peer that Lincoln would credit in later years as a strong influence on his intellectual development. Lacking a formal education, Lincoln’s personal philosophy was shaped by "an amazingly retentive memory and a passion for reading and learning." It was Lincoln’s reading, rather than his relationships, that were most influential in shaping his personal beliefs.[45] Lincoln’s reading and study of the Bible was an integral part of his intellectual roots.

Lincoln did, even as a boy, largely reject organized religion, but the Calvinistic "doctrine of necessity" would remain a factor throughout his life. In 1846 Lincoln described the effect of this doctrine as "that the human mind is impelled to action, or held in rest by some power, over which the mind itself has no control."[46] In April 1864, in justifying his actions in regard to Emancipation, Lincoln wrote, "I claim not to have controlled events, but confess plainly that events have controlled me. Now, at the end of three years struggle the nation's condition is not what either party, or any man devised, or expected. God alone can claim it."[47]

As Lincoln matured, and especially during his term as president, the idea of a divine will somehow interacting with human affairs more and more influenced his public expressions. On a personal level, the death of his son Willie in February 1862 may have caused Lincoln to look towards religion for answers and solace.[48] After Willie’s death, in the summer or early fall of 1862, Lincoln attempted to put on paper his private musings on why, from a divine standpoint, the severity of the war was necessary:

The will of God prevails. In great contests each party claims to act in accordance with the will of God. Both may be, and one must be, wrong. God cannot be for and against the same thing at the same time. In the present civil war it is quite possible that God's purpose is something different from the purpose of either party — and yet the human instrumentalities, working just as they do, are of the best adaptation to effect his purpose. I am almost ready to say this is probably true — that God wills this contest, and wills that it shall not end yet. By his mere quiet power, on the minds of the now contestants, He could have either saved or destroyed the Union without a human contest. Yet the contest began. And having begun He could give the final victory to either side any day. Yet the contest proceeds.[49]

Lincoln’s religious skepticism was fueled by his exposure to the ideas of the Lockean Enlightenment and classical liberalism, especially economic liberalism.[50] Consistent with the common practice of the Whig party, Lincoln would often use the Declaration of Independence as the philosophical and moral expression of these two philosophies.[51] In a February 22, 1861 speech at Independence Hall in Philadelphia Lincoln said,

I have never had a feeling politically that did not spring from the sentiments embodied in the Declaration of Independence. … It was not the mere matter of the separation of the Colonies from the motherland; but that sentiment in the Declaration of Independence which gave liberty, not alone to the people of this country, but, I hope, to the world, for all future time. It was that which gave promise that in due time the weight would be lifted from the shoulders of all men. This is a sentiment embodied in the Declaration of Independence.[52]

He found in the Declaration justification for Whig economic policy and opposition to territorial expansion and the nativist platform of the Know Nothings. In claiming that all men were created free, Lincoln and the Whigs argued that this freedom required economic advancement, expanded education, territory to grow, and the ability of the nation to absorb the growing immigrant population.[53]

It was the Declaration of Independence, rather than the Bible, that Lincoln most relied on in order to oppose any further territorial expansion of slavery. He saw the Declaration as more than a political document. To him, as well as to many abolitionists and other antislavery leaders, it was, foremost, a moral document that had forever determined valuable criteria in shaping the future of the nation.[54]

Legacy and memorials

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File:Abraham Lincoln seated, Feb 9, 1864.jpg
While Lincoln is usually portrayed bearded, he first grew a beard in 1860 at the suggestion of 11-year-old Grace Bedell

Lincoln's death made the President a martyr to many. Repeated polls of historians have ranked Lincoln as among the greatest presidents in U.S. history, often appearing in the first position. Among contemporary admirers, Lincoln is usually seen as personifying classical values of honesty and integrity, as well as respect for individual and minority rights, and human freedom in general.

Many American organizations of all purposes and agendas continue to cite his name and image, with interests ranging from the gay rights-supporting Log Cabin Republicans to the insurance corporation Lincoln National Corporation. The Lincoln automobile is also named after him. The ballistic missile submarine Abraham Lincoln (SSBN-602) and the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) were named in his honor. Also, the Liberty ship SS Nancy Hanks was named for his mother. During the Spanish Civil War, the American faction of the International Brigades named themselves the Abraham Lincoln Brigade.

Lincoln has been memorialized in many city names, notably the capital of Nebraska. Lincoln, Illinois, is the only city to be named for Abraham Lincoln before he became President. Lincoln's name and image appear in numerous places. These include the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., the U.S. Lincoln $5 bill and the Lincoln cent, Lincoln's sculpture on the Mount Rushmore, and the Lincoln Home National Historic Site in Springfield, Illinois. In addition, New Salem, Illinois (a reconstruction of Lincoln's early adult hometown), Ford's Theatre, and Petersen House (where he died) are all preserved as museums. The Lincoln Shrine in Redlands, California, is located behind the A.K. Smiley Public Library. The state nickname for Illinois is Land of Lincoln.

Counties in 19 U.S. states (Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Kansas, Maine, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Tennessee, West Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming) are named after Lincoln.

Abraham Lincoln's birthday, February 12, was formerly a national holiday, now commemorated as Presidents' Day. However, it is still observed in Illinois and many other states as a separate legal holiday, Lincoln's Birthday. A dozen states have legal holidays celebrating the third Monday in February as 'Presidents' Day' as a combination Washington-Lincoln Day.

To commemorate his upcoming 200th birthday in February 2009, Congress established the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission (ALBC) in 2000. Dedicated to renewing American appreciation of Lincoln’s legacy, the 15-member commission is made up of lawmakers and scholars and also features an adivsory board of over 130 various Lincoln historians and enthusiasts. Located at Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., the ALBC is the organizing force behind numerous tributes, programs and cultural events highlighting a two-year celebration scheduled to begin in February 2008 at Lincoln’s birthplace: Hodgenville, Kentucky.

Lincoln's birthplace and family home are national historic memorials: the Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Site in Hodgenville, and the Lincoln Home National Historic Site in Springfield, Illinois. The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum opened in Springfield in 2005; it is a major tourist attraction, with state-of-the-art exhibits. The Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery is located in Elwood, Illinois.

Electoral history

Illinois' 7th congressional district, 1846[55]

1856 Republican National Convention (Vice Presidential tally)[56]:

Illinois United States Senate election, 1858[57]:

1860 Republican National Convention (Final Results on 3rd Ballot)[58]:

United States presidential election, 1860

United States presidential election, 1864

See also

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Notes

  1. ^ "[I]n his short autobiography written for the 1860 presidential campaign, Lincoln would describe his protest in the Illinois legislature as one that 'briefly defined his position on the slavery question, and so far as it goes, it was then the same that it is now." This was in reference to the anti-expansion sentiments he had then expressed. Doris Kearns Goodwin, Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln (2005) p. 91.
  2. ^ Holzer pg. 232. Writing of the Cooper Union speech, Holzer notes, "Cooper Union proved a unique confluence of political culture, rhetorical opportunity, technological innovation, and human genius, and it brought Abraham Lincoln to the center stage of American politics at precisely the right time and place, and with precisely the right message: that slavery was wrong, and ought to be confined to the areas where it already existed, and placed on the 'course of ultimate extinction... .'"
  3. ^ The farm site is now preserved as part of Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Site.
  4. ^ Donald, (1995) pp. 28, 152.
  5. ^ Lincoln Trail Homestead State Park
  6. ^ Abraham Lincoln, The Physical Man
  7. ^ "Years later Abe wrote, 'At this place A.[braham] took an early start as a hunter, which was never much improved afterwards. A few days before the completion of his eighth year, in the absence of his father, a flock of wild turkeys approached the new log-cabin, and A.[braham] with a rifle gun, standing inside, shot through a crack and killed one of them.' Then came another sentence, 'He has never since pulled a trigger on any larger game,' making it clear that when they had deer or bear meat or other food from "larger game," it was not from his shooting. He didn't like shooting to kill and didn't care for a reputation as a hunter." Carl Sandburg. Abraham Lincoln: The Prairie Years and the War Years. Harcourt Brace and Co., 1954. p.10.
  8. ^ Thomas (1952) 32-34; Basler (1946) p. 551
  9. ^ Protest in Illinois Legislature on Slavery, p.75, March 3, 1837
  10. ^ Congressional Globe, 30th Session (1848) pp.93-95
  11. ^ Donald, (1995) ch. 6.
  12. ^ Donald (1995), 150-51
  13. ^ Donald, (1995) ch. 7.
  14. ^ Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln, 2:255
  15. ^ A House Divided Against Itself Cannot Stand, June 1858
  16. ^ First Debate with Stephen A. Douglas at Ottawa, Illinois, August 21, 1858
  17. ^ Fourth Debate with Stephen A. Douglas at Charleston, Illinois, September 18, 1858
  18. ^ Donald, (1995) ch. 8.
  19. ^ Gabor S. Boritt, "'And the War Came'? Abraham Lincoln and the Question of Individual Responsibility," Why the Civil War Came ed by Boritt (1996), pp 3-30.
  20. ^ Thomas (1952) p 216; Reinhard H. Luthin, The First Lincoln Campaign (1944); Nevins vol 4;
  21. ^ Allan Nevins, The Improvised War, 1861-1862 (1959) p 29
  22. ^ Letter to Horace Greeley, August 22, 1862
  23. ^ Lincoln addressed the issue of his consistency in an 1864 letter to Albert G. Hodges. Letter to Albert G. Hodges, April 4, 1864
  24. ^ Images of America: Altoona, by Sr. Anne Francis Pulling, 2001, 10.
  25. ^ Life and Times of Frederick Douglass, by Frederick Douglass, 1895
  26. ^ Andrew Curtin to Abraham Lincoln, Sept. 4, 1863 (Library of Congress)
  27. ^ Mark Grimsley and Brooks D Simpson, eds. The Collapse of the Confederacy (2001) p 80
  28. ^ Lincoln, Memorandum concerning his probable failure of re-election, August 23, 1864. Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln, vol. 7, p. 514, (1953).
  29. ^ Lincoln, Second inaugural address, March 4, 1865. From Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln, vol. 8, p. 333, Rutgers University Press (1953, 1990).
  30. ^ Joseph Hooker biography
  31. ^ See Hofstadter, Richard, The United States: The History of a Republic, Prentice-Hall, 1967, p. 446.
  32. ^ Proclamation of Amnesty. 1909-14. American Historical Documents, 1000-1904. The Harvard Classics
  33. ^ Donald (1995) ch. 20
  34. ^ Donald (1995) 576, 580,
  35. ^ "President Lincoln Enters Richmond, 1865" EyeWitness to History, www.eywitnesstohistory.com (2000).
  36. ^ Jaffa (2000) p. 399
  37. ^ John Patrick Diggins, The Lost Soul of American Politics: Virtue, Self-interest, and the Foundations of Liberalism (1986) p. 307.
  38. ^ Foner (1970) p. 215 says, "Lincoln stressed the moral basis of republicanism." See also McPherson (1992) pp.61-64.
  39. ^ Jaffa (2000) p. 263
  40. ^ H.L. Mencken said "It is difficult to imagine anything more untrue. The Union soldiers in the battle actually fought against self-determination; it was the Confederates who fought for the right of their people to govern themselves." Mencken did not mention the right of self-determination rights for blacks.
  41. ^ Wills (1992) p. 39.
  42. ^ Harrison, Lowell Hayes, Lincoln of Kentucky, University Press of Kentucky, 2000, pp. 3–4. ISBN 0813121566.
  43. ^ a b c George Alfred Townsend, The Life, Crime and Capture of John Wilkes Booth. New York: Dick & Fitzgerald, 1865. (LCCN 12002580.
  44. ^ Guelzo pg. 18-19
  45. ^ Guelzo pg. 20. Miller pg. 57-59
  46. ^ Donald pg. 15. The quote came from a letter to the public in which Lincoln was denying charges by a political opponent that he was a “religious scoffer.”
  47. ^ Donald pg. 514
  48. ^ Wilson pg. 251-254
  49. ^ Wilson pg. 254
  50. ^ Guelzo pg. 20
  51. ^ Guelzo pg.194
  52. ^ Jaffa pg 258
  53. ^ Guelzo pg.194-195
  54. ^ Miller pg. 297
  55. ^ Our Campaigns - IL District 7 Race - Nov 02, 1846
  56. ^ Our Campaigns - US Vice President - R Convention Race - Jun 17, 1856
  57. ^ Our Campaigns - IL US Senate Race - Nov 02, 1858
  58. ^ Our Campaigns - US President - R Convention Race - May 16, 1860

Bibliography

Biographies

  • Isaac N. Arnold, The Life of Abraham Lincoln (1885), written by Lincoln's friend and political ally
  • William H Herndon, Lincoln
  • Beveridge, Albert J. Abraham Lincoln: 1809-1858 (1928). 2 vol. to 1858; notable for strong, unbiased political coverage online edition
  • Richard Carwardine. Lincoln: A Life of Purpose and Power ISBN 1-4000-4456-1 (2003), winner of the 2004 Lincoln Prize from Gettysburg College
  • David Herbert Donald. Lincoln (1999) ISBN 0-684-82535-X, very well reviewed by scholars; Donald has won two Pulitzer prizes for biography
  • William E. Gienapp. Abraham Lincoln and Civil War America: A Biography by ISBN 0-19-515099-6 (2002), short online edition
  • Allen C. Guelzo. Abraham Lincoln: Redeemer President ISBN 0-8028-3872-3 (1999) online edition
  • John Hay & John George Nicolay. Abraham Lincoln: a History (1890); online at Volume 1 and Volume 2 10 volumes in all; highly detailed narrative of era written by Lincoln's top aides
  • Reinhard H Luthin The Real Abraham Lincoln (1960), emphasis on politics
  • Mark E. Neely. The Abraham Lincoln Encyclopedia (1984), detailed articles on many men and movements associated with AL
  • Mark E. Neely. The Last Best Hope of Earth: Abraham Lincoln and the Promise of America (1993), Pulitzer prize winning author
  • Ralph G. Newman [editor]. Lincoln for the Ages (1960), Doubleday and Company, New York. Seventy eight articles by distinguished authors
  • Stephen B. Oates. With Malice Toward None: The Life of Abraham Lincoln (1994)
  • James G. Randall. Lincoln the President (4 vol., 1945–55; reprint 2000.) by prize winning scholar
    • Mr. Lincoln excerpts ed. by Richard N. Current (1957) online edition
  • Carl Sandburg Abraham Lincoln: The Prairie Years (2 vol 1926); The War Years (4 vol 1939). Pulitzer Prize winning biography by famous poet vol1 online vol 2 online
  • Benjamin P. Thomas; Abraham Lincoln: A Biography (1952) online edition
  • Ingri and Edgar Parin d'Aulaire, Abraham Lincoln (1939), for children
  • John C. Waugh. One Man Great Enough: Abraham Lincoln’s Road to Civil War ISBN 978-0-15-101071-4 (2007), Harcourt
  • John C. Waugh. Reelecting Lincoln: The Battle for the 1864 Presidency ISBN 0-517-59766-7 (1997), Crown Publishers

Specialty topics

  • Angle, Paul M., Here I Have Lived: A History of Lincoln's Springfield, 1821-1865, (1935) online edition
  • Baker, Jean H. Mary Todd Lincoln: A Biography (1987) online edition
  • Belz, Herman. Abraham Lincoln, Constitutionalism, and Equal Rights in the Civil War Era (1998)
  • Boritt, Gabor S. Lincoln and the Economics of the American Dream (1994). Lincoln's economic theory and policies
  • Boritt, Gabor S. ed. Lincoln the War President (1994)
  • Boritt, Gabor S., ed. The Historian's Lincoln U. of Illinois Press, 1988, historiography
  • Bruce, Robert V. Lincoln and the Tools of War (1956) on weapons development during the war online edition
  • Bush, Bryan S. Lincoln and the Speeds: The Untold Story of a Devoted and Enduring Friendship (2008) ISBN 0979880262
  • Chittenden, Lucius E., Recollections of President Lincoln and His Administration, (1891). – Google Books
  • Donald, David Herbert. Lincoln Reconsidered: Essays on the Civil War Era (1960)
  • Donald, David Herbert. We Are Lincoln Men: Abraham Lincoln and His Friends Simon & Schuster, (2003).
  • Foner, Eric. Free Soil, Free Labor, Free Men: The Ideology of the Republican Party before the Civil War (1970) intellectual history of different prewar faction's in AL's party
  • Doris Kearns Goodwin, Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln ISBN 0-684-82490-6 (2005)
  • Guelzo Allen C., Lincoln and Douglas: The Debates that Defined America, Simon & Schuster (2008). ISBN-13: 978-0743273206
  • Harris, William C. With Charity for All: Lincoln and the Restoration of the Union (1997). AL's plans for Reconstruction
  • Hendrick, Burton J. Lincoln's War Cabinet (1946) online edition
  • Hofstadter, Richard. The American Political Tradition: And the Men Who Made It (1948) ch 5: "Abraham Lincoln and the Self-Made Myth"
  • Holzer, Harold. Lincoln at Cooper Union: The Speech That Made Abraham Lincoln President (2004)
  • Jaffa, Harry V.,A New birth of Freedom: Abraham Lincoln and the Coming of the Civil War (2000) ISBN 0-8476-9952-8
  • Marshall, John A., " American Bastille" (1870) Fifth edition: A History of the Illegal Arrests and Imprisonment of American Citizens in the Northern and Border States on Account of Their political opinions during the late Civil War. Part 1
  • McPherson, James M. Abraham Lincoln and the Second American Revolution (1992)
  • McPherson, James M. Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era (1988). Pulitzer Prize winner surveys all aspects of the war
  • Miller, William Lee. Lincoln's Virtues: An Ethical Biography (2002) ISBN 0-375-40158-X
  • Morgenthau, Hans J., and David Hein. Essays on Lincoln's Faith and Politics. White Burkett Miller Center of Public Affairs at the U of Virginia, 1983.
  • Neely, Mark E. The Fate of Liberty: Abraham Lincoln and Civil Liberties (1992). Pulitzer Prize winner. online version
  • Nevins, Allan. Ordeal of the Union 8-volume (1947-1971). 1. Fruits of Manifest Destiny, 1847-1852; 2. A House Dividing, 1852-1857; 3. Douglas, Buchanan, and Party Chaos, 1857-1859; 4. Prologue to Civil War, 1859-1861; 5. The Improvised War, 1861-1862; 6. War Becomes Revolution, 1862-1863; 7. The Organized War, 1863-1864; 8. The Organized War to Victory, 1864-1865; most thorough coverage of the era, with Lincoln at center
  • Ostendorf, Lloyd, and Hamilton, Charles, Lincoln in Photographs: An Album of Every Known Pose, Morningside House Inc., 1963, ISBN 089029-087-3.
  • Paludan, Philip S. The Presidency of Abraham Lincoln (1994), thorough treatment of Lincoln's administration
  • Peterson, Merrill D. Lincoln in American Memory (1994). how Lincoln was remembered after 1865
  • Polsky, Andrew J. "'Mr. Lincoln's Army' Revisited: Partisanship, Institutional Position, and Union Army Command, 1861–1865." Studies in American Political Development (2002), 16: 176-207
  • Randall, James G. Lincoln the Liberal Statesman (1947)
  • Richardson, Heather Cox. The Greatest Nation of the Earth: Republican Economic Policies during the Civil War (1997)
  • Shenk, Joshua Wolf. Lincoln's Melancholy: How Depression Challenged a President and Fueled His Greatness (2005)
  • Kenneth P. Williams. Lincoln Finds a General: A Military Study of the Civil War (1959) 5 volumes on Lincoln's control of the war
  • Williams, T. Harry. Lincoln and His Generals (1967).
  • Wills, Garry. Lincoln at Gettysburg: The Words That Remade America by ISBN 0-671-86742-3
  • Wilson, Douglas L. Honor's Voice: The Transformation of Abraham Lincoln by (1999).
  • Wilson, Douglas L. Lincoln's Sword: The Presidency and the Power of Words(2006) ISBN 1-4000-4039-6.

Lincoln in art and popular culture

Fiction

Film and television

Primary sources

External links

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Project Gutenberg eTexts

|CitationClass=web }} to 1856; strong coverage of national politics

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|CitationClass=web }} (1832 to 1901) ; covers 1856 to early 1861; very detailed coverage of national politics; part of 10 volume "life and times" written by Lincoln's top aides

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    • {{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation

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