Wednesday, September 22, 2004

Abraham Lincoln

Abraham Lincoln. This is a good biography of American President Abraham Lincoln.

From the site:

Abraham Lincoln (February 12 , 1809 - April 15 , 1865) was the 16th (1861 - 1865) President of the United States , and the first President from the Republican Party . He is well praised for successfully restoring the federal unity of the nation by defeating the secessionist Confederate States of America and along the way, playing in an important role in ending chattel slavery in the United States. However, a number of states' rights supporters continue to view Lincoln as a tyrant who suspended civil liberties and suppressed the "legitimate right" to secede.

Born on February 12 , 1809 , in Kentucky , he moved at a young age to the area near Springfield, Illinois . He served as a captain in the U.S. Army during the Black Hawk War . He later tried his hand at several business and political ventures. Lincoln served four terms in the Illinois State Legislature, was twice elected to Congress (1847 and 1849) and had a successful law practice in Illinois both before and after his two terms in the House of Representatives. It is commonly held that Lincoln had turbulent mood swings alternating between grandiosity and depression, which greatly moderated after his marriage to Mary Todd Lincoln in 1842.

First elected to the House of Representatives , Lincoln spent most of his time in Washington, DC alone and made less than a spectacular impression on his fellow politicians. During his unsuccessful campaign for the United States Senate against Stephen A. Douglas , it was Lincoln's well-known gift of oratory that brought public support to an otherwise unimpressive candidate. Lincoln debated Douglas in a series of events which represented a national discussion on the issues that were about to split the nation in two. The Lincoln/Douglas debates presaged the Presidential election of 1860 , in which Douglas and Lincoln were once again opponents.

Shortly after his election, the South made it clear that secession was inevitable which greatly increased tension across the nation. President-elect Lincoln survived an assassination attempt in Baltimore, Maryland and on February 23 , 1861 arrived secretly in disguise to Washington, DC . The South ridiculed Lincoln for this seemingly cowardly act, but the efforts at security may have been prudent. At Lincoln's inauguration on March 4 , 1861 , the Turners formed Lincoln's bodyguard, and a sizable garrison of Union troops was always present, ready to protect the president and the capital from rebel invasion.

No comments: