Another time, he stopped his men before they executed a wandering Native American as a spy. Stepping in front of their raised muskets, Lincoln is said to have challenged his men to combat for the terrified native's life.
His men stood down. After the war, he studied law and campaigned for a seat on the Illinois State Legislature. Although not elected in his first attempt, Lincoln persevered and won the position in , serving as a Whig.
Only one lived to adulthood. The deep melancholy that pervaded the Lincoln family, with occasional detours into outright madness, is in some ways sourced in their close relationship with death. Lincoln, a self-described "prairie lawyer," focused on his all-embracing law practice in the early s after one term in Congress from to He joined the new Republican party—and the ongoing argument over sectionalism—in A series of heated debates in with Stephen A.
Abraham Lincoln and the Emancipation Proclamation
Douglas , the sponsor of the Kansas-Nebraska Act , over slavery and its place in the United States forged Lincoln into a prominent figure in national politics. On November 6, , Lincoln won the presidential election without the support of a single Southern state. Talk of secession, bandied about since the s, took on a serious new tone. Rather, he felt it was his sacred duty as President of the United States to preserve the Union at all costs.
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His first inaugural address was an appeal to the rebellious states, seven of which had already seceded, to rejoin the nation. His first draft of the speech ended with an ominous message: "Shall it be peace, or the sword? Lincoln forced the Confederate hand with his decision to resupply the fort, which had suddenly become an outpost in a hostile nation.
The Southern navy turned away the supply convoy and then fired the first shot of the war at Fort Sumter, forcing the Federal defenders to surrender after a hour battle. Throughout the war Lincoln struggled to find capable generals for his armies. As commander-in-chief, he legally held the highest rank in the United States armed forces, and he diligently exercised his authority through strategic planning, weapons testing, and the promotion and demotion of officers.
McDowell , Fremont, McClellan , Pope , McClellan again, Buell , Burnside , Rosecrans --all of these men and more withered under Lincoln's watchful eye as they failed to bring him success on the battlefield. He did not issue his famous Emancipation Proclamation until January 1, after the Union victory at the Battle of Antietam.
Nevertheless, it changed the tenor of the war, making it, from the Northern point of view, a fight both to preserve the Union and to end slavery.
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In , Lincoln ran again for President. After years of war, he feared he would not win. Only in the final months of the campaign did the exertions of Ulysses S. Grant , the quiet general now in command of all of the Union armies, begin to bear fruit. A string of heartening victories buoyed Lincoln's ticket and contributed significantly to his re-election. In his second inauguration speech , March 4, , he set the tone he intended to take when the war finally ended.
The Lincoln administration did more than just manage the Civil War, although its reverberations could still be felt in a number of policies.
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The Revenue Act of established the United States' first income tax, largely to pay the costs of total war. The Morrill Act of established the basis of the state university system in this country, while the Homestead Act, also passed in , encouraged settlement of the West by offering acres of free land to settlers. Lincoln also created the Department of Agriculture and formally instituted the Thanksgiving holiday.
Internationally, he navigated the "Trent Affair," a diplomatic crisis regarding the seizure of a British ship carrying Confederate envoys, in such a way as to quell the saber-rattling overtures coming from Britain as well as the United States. In another spill-over from the war, Lincoln restricted the civil liberties of due process and freedom of the press.
The assassination was part of a larger plot to eliminate the Northern government that also left Secretary of State William Seward grievously injured.
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Noyes W. Miner, by his widowed wife, Mary. Miner's family has passed it down and recently donated it so the public can now view it. Exterior of the hospital that gave the Bible to President Lincoln in A few months later, upon receiving another copy of the Bible as a gift, Lincoln wrote , "In regard to this Great Book, I have but to say, it is the best gift God has given to man.
All the good the Saviour gave to the world was communicated through this book.
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But for it, we could not know right from wrong. All things most desirable for man's welfare, here and hereafter, are to be found portrayed in it. Abraham Lincoln to N. Miner, D.