Born on 12th February 1809 to a Kentucky frontiersman, Abraham Lincoln was the 16th President of the United States of America. He served the country from March 1861 to April 1865 when he was assassinated. Lincoln is remembered by many Americans to have led the union of the red and blue states through the civil war that has been described as the bloodiest war that bore the greatest constitutional, moral and political crises.
Before rising to the house on the hill, Lincoln made extraordinary efforts to acquire knowledge while working on a farm as a laborer splitting rails for use in making fences. He also worked as a store keeper at New Salem, Illinois. During the Black Hawk War, he was a captain. Besides, he spent eight years working in the legislature at Illinois where he rode the circuit of courts for several years.
Abraham Lincoln was married to Mary Todd with whom they had four boys. Among their children, only one lived to maturity. In 1858, Lincoln ran for senator against Stephen A Douglas and lost. However, it was his appeal in the debate that earned him a national reputation and the Republican nomination for president in 1860.
While giving his inaugural address, Lincoln was very categorical in pointing out that he shall be the most solemn one to preserve, protect and defend the government of the United States of America. He was willing to go to any length towards the protection of the Federal law and the Union.
As the President, he played a great role in building the Republican Party to become a strong national organization. He further rallied a great number of northern Democrats to the cause of the Union. His Emancipation Proclamation on 1st January 1858 declared the ultimate freedom of slaves who were within the confederacy.
Abraham Lincoln was concerned and came out boldly in telling the world that the Civil war indeed involved a bigger issue. In his speech at the dedication of the military cemetery at Gettysburg, he was quoted saying, ‘’that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain- that this nation, under God, 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.’’
In 1864, Lincoln won re-election just as the Union military triumphs marked an end to the war. The president was very flexible in his plan for peace urging the Southerners to lay down their arms and join hands in building the union.
On Good Friday, April 14th 1865, Abraham Lincoln came face to face with his assassination at Ford’s Theatre, Washington. The assassin was identified as John Wilkes Booth; an actor who was convinced at the time of committing the act that, he was offering a helping hand to the Southerners. However, the result was the opposite since with the death of Lincoln, the possibility of peace also died.
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