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Lincoln Taney
Lincoln and Chief Justice Taney: Slavery, Secession, and the President's War Powers

The clashes between President Abraham Lincoln and Chief Justice Roger B. Taney over slavery, secession, and the president's constitutional war powers went to the heart of Lincoln's presidency. James Simon, author of the acclaimed What Kind of Nation, brings to vivid life the passionate struggle during the worst crisis in the nation's history, the Civil War

Abraham Lincoln

Sixteenth President 1861-1865

Young Abraham Lincoln During the Civil War, telegraph wires were strung to follow the action on the battlefield but there was no telegraph office in the White House, so Lincoln went across the street to the War Department to get the news.
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Come Retribution
Come Retribution: The Confederate Secret Service and the Assassination of Lincoln

Many Confederates believed that Abraham Lincoln himself was the sponsor of the Union army's heavy destruction of the South. With John Wilkes Booth as its agent, the Confederate Secret Service devised a plan of retribution--to seize President Lincoln, hold him hostage, and bring the war-weary North to capitulation.

Fast Fact: Abhorring war, Abraham Lincoln accepted War as the only means to save the Union.

Biography: The government will not assail you.... You have no oath registered in Heaven to destroy the government, while I shall have the most solemn one to preserve, protect and defend it."

Lincoln thought secession illegal, and was willing to use force to defend Federal law and the Union. When Confederate batteries fired on Fort Sumter and forced its surrender, he called on the states for 75,000 volunteers. Four more slave states joined the Confederacy but four remained within the Union. The Civil War had begun.

The son of a Kentucky frontiersman, Lincoln had to struggle for a living and for learning. Five months before receiving his party's nomination for President, he sketched his life:

"I was born Feb. 12, 1809, in Hardin County, Kentucky. My parents were both born in Virginia, of undistinguished families--second families, perhaps I should say. My mother, who died in my tenth year, was of a family of the name of Hanks.... My father ... removed from Kentucky to ... Indiana, in my eighth year.... It was a wild region, with many bears and other wild animals still in the woods. There I grew up.... Of course when I came of age I did not know much. Still somehow, I could read, write, and cipher ... but that was all."

Lincoln made extraordinary efforts to attain knowledge while working on a farm, splitting rails for fences, and keeping store at New Salem, Illinois. He was a captain in the Black Hawk War, spent eight years in the Illinois legislature, and rode the circuit of courts for many years. His law partner said of him, "His ambition was a little engine that knew no rest."

He married Mary Todd, and they had four boys, only one of whom lived to maturity.

In 1858 Lincoln ran against Stephen A. Douglas for Senator. He lost the election, but in debating with Douglas he gained a national reputation that won him the Republican nomination for President in 1860.

As President, he built the Republican Party into a strong national organization. Further, he rallied most of the northern Democrats to the Union cause.

On January 1, 1863, he issued the Emancipation Proclamation that declared forever free those slaves within the Confederacy.

Lincoln never let the world forget that the Civil War involved an even larger issue. This he stated most movingly in dedicating the military cemetery at Gettysburg: "that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain--that this nation, President Abraham Lincolnunder 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."

Lincoln won re-election in 1864, as Union military triumphs heralded an end to the war. In his planning for peace, the President was flexible and generous, encouraging Southerners to lay down their arms and join speedily in reunion.

The spirit that guided him was clearly that of his Second Inaugural Address, now inscribed on one wall of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D. C.:

"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.... "

On Good Friday, April 14, 1865, Lincoln was assassinated at Ford's Theatre in Washington by John Wilkes Booth, an actor, who somehow thought he was helping the South. The opposite was the result, for with Lincoln's death, the possibility of peace with magnanimity died.

Original Work
Did Lincoln Instigate the events at Fort Sumter April 1861?

Gettysburg Address and the Bible
Lincoln's Gettysburg Address: Echoes of the Bible and Book of Common Prayer

This is a new look at the sources of one of history's great speeches. While it has long been determined that Abraham Lincoln's writings were influenced by the King James Bible, until now no full-length study has shown the precise ways in which the Gettysburg Address uses its specific language

Gettysburg Young Reader Title
The Gettysburg Address in Translation: What It Really Means

How long is four score and seven years? Just what are unalienable rights? This translation makes important historical documents meaningful. Each book translates the work of a primary source into a language you can understand.

President Lincoln Meets His Generals at Antietam, 3rd October 1862
President Lincoln Meets His Generals at Antietam,
3rd October 1862 Photographic Print

16 in. x 12 in.
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16th president of the united states Abe Lincoln

Lincoln's Box Ford TheatrePresidential Box Ford's Theatre

Abraham and Mary Lincoln: A House Divided

Abraham Lincoln's legacy as the Great Emancipator reshaped the nation while his tragic death left Mary reclusive and forgotten. DVD

Mary Todd Lincoln

Abraham Lincoln. Autograph manuscript: [Springfield, Illinois], [ca. 1857 - 1858]
House Divided notes
Why, Kansas is neither the whole, nor a tithe of the real question. "A house divided against itself can not stand"

I believe this government can not endure permanently half slave, and half free.

I expressed this belief a year ago; and subsequent developments have but confirmed me.

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. Either the opponents of slavery will arrest the further spread of it, and put it in course of ultimate extinction; or its advocates will push it forward till it shall become alike lawfull in all the states, old, as well as new. Do you doubt it? Study the Dred Scott decision, and then see, how little, even now, remains to be done.

That decision may be reduced to three points. The first is, that a negro can not be a citizen. That point is made in order to deprive the negro in every possible event, of the benefit of that provision of the U. S. Constitution which declares that: "The citizens of each State shall be entitled to all previleges [sic] and immunities of citizens in the several States."

The second point is, that the U. S. constitution protects slavery, as property, in all the U. S. territories, and that neither congress, nor the people of the territories, nor any other power, can prohibit it, at any time prior to the formation of State constitutions.

This point is made, in order that the territories may safely be filled up with slaves, before the formation of State constitutions, and thereby to embarrass the free state (sentiment, and enhance the chances of slave constitutions being adopted.)

(The third point decided is that the voluntary bringing of Dred Scott into Illinois by his master, and holding him here a long time as a slave, did not operate his emancipation -- did not make him free.)

Notes: Basler 2: 452-453, from the Nicolay-Hay edition of Lincoln's works with minor variations in paragraphing, emphases, capitalization and spelling, and expanded abbreviations. The portion in angled brackets comes from the same source. Basler dates this speech "[c. May 18 1858]" based upon the Alton Weekly Courier report of the May 20th. Nicolay-Hay dates the speech to "[October 1, 1858?]" which is too late since Lincoln delivered a later form of this "House Divided" speech at the Republican State Convention, June 16 of that year (Basler 2: 461-2 and 464). Current dating is based upon Don E. Fehrenbacher's hypothesis that this speech responds to Stephen A. Douglas's speech in the Senate of 1857 Dec. 9

Source: Gilder Lehrman Collection

Lincoln Douglas Debate
The Complete Lincoln-Douglas Debates of 1858

Zarefsky analyzes the rhetoric of the speeches, showing how Lincoln and Douglas chose their arguments and initiated a debate that shook the nation. Their eloquent, statesmanlike discussion of the morality of slavery illustrates the masterful use of rhetorical strategies and tactics in the public forum: a form of discourse that has nearly disappeared from the political scene today
Illustrated London Times 1861
Click to enlarge

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The Gettysburg Gospel:
The Lincoln Speech That Nobody Knows

Reconstructs what really happened in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, on November 19, 1863.
Civil War soldier toys 102 pieces
Civil War Soldier 102 Piece Playset
  • 25 Union and 25 Confederate Soldier Figures, 18 Horses, 10 Cannon
  • 2 Covered Wagons, 2 Tents, 2 Canoes, 2 Flags, 16 Fences
  • Size: Figures Stand up to 2-1/8 inches tall
  • Scale: 1/32nd, Wagons and Horses slightly smaller
Lincoln Calls up a Militia
Lincoln Assassination
Gettysburg Address
American Civil War Exhibits
Civil War Documents
Civil War Timeline
Women in the War
Confederate President Jefferson Davis
Kids Zone Battle of Gettysburg
Civil War Collectibles
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Lincoln and his world

Lincoln and His World: The Early Years
Birth to Illinois Legislature

The story of this monumental American and bring a fascinating era of American history to life. The book covers Lincoln's birth through his first election to the Illinois legislature in 1834
Presidential Vote Results by State 1860
Election Results by State 1860
Source: National Atlas . Gov

Civil War History Reading Abraham Lincoln Book Titles

Blood on the Moon: The Assassination of Abraham Lincoln

The definative book on the Lincoln Assassination, and the escape of John Wilkes Booth. not only does the author give a clear and concise accounting, he takes us out of the vacuum and explains the minute details of the very knotted relationships between the conspirators, and the links of the Confederate underground to Canada and back.

Lincoln and the Decision for War: The Northern Response to Secession

Democratic leader Stephen Douglas to Republican party leader William Seward. More than just a politcal history, letters and quotes from common townspeople provide a complete view of the perceptions of the time
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The TRial
The Trial: The Assassination of President Lincoln and the Trial of the Conspirators

On April 14, 1865, John Wilkes Booth assassinated President Abraham Lincoln. By April 26, eight of the ten people eventually charged as accomplices in Lincoln's murder were in custody

Forced into Glory
Abraham Lincoln's White Dream

This dissenting view of Lincoln's greatness surveys the president's policies, speeches, and private utterances and concludes that he had little real interest in abolition. Pointing to Lincoln's support for the fugitive slave laws, his friendship with slave-owning senator Henry Clay, and conversations in which he entertained the idea of deporting slaves
The Emancipation Proclamation
The Emancipation Proclamation: Three Views
The Emancipation Proclamation in three distinct respects: the influence of and impact upon African Americans; the legal, political, and military exigencies; and the role pictorial images played in establishing the document in public memory.
Emancipation Proclamation: The End of Slavery in America
Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation
The End of Slavery in America

No single official paper in American history changed the lives of as many Americans as Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation. But no American document has been held up to greater suspicion. Its bland and lawyerlike language is unfavorably compared to the soaring eloquence of the Gettysburg Address and the Second Inaugural
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Fate of Liberty
The Fate of Liberty: Abraham Lincoln and Civil Liberties

If Abraham Lincoln was known as the Great Emancipator, he was also the only president to suspend the writ of habeas corpus. Indeed, Lincoln's record on the Constitution and individual rights has fueled a century of debate
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Lincolns Constitution
Lincoln's Constitution

Daniel Farber leads the reader to understand exactly how Abraham Lincoln faced the inevitable constitutional issues brought on by the Civil War. Examining what arguments Lincoln made in defense of his actions and how his words and deeds fit into the context of the times
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Big Enough
Big Enough to Be Inconsistent: Abraham
Lincoln Confronts Slavery and Race
“Cruel, merciful; peace-loving, a fighter; despising Negroes and letting them fight and vote; protecting slavery and freeing slaves.” Abraham Lincoln was, W. E. B. Du Bois declared, “big enough to be inconsistent.”
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Lincoln Women
Lincoln's Ladies: The Women in the Life of the Sixteenth President

The tumultuous experiences Abraham Lincoln had with women have long been chronicled. Lincoln's Ladies attempts to answer the questions of how he was affected by the women in his life and how he affected them. Abandoned through death by his mother, his sister, and his sweetheart, Ann Rutledge, Lincoln found it difficult to relate to women and developed an emotional barrier that often antagonized them.
How we elected Lincoln
How We Elected Lincoln
Personal Recollections

Abram J. Dittenhoefer was a young South Carolinian who embraced abolition and moved to New York in order to work for the newly formed Republican party and its antislavery platform. Even though he was in his early twenties, he quickly established himself as a savvy and creative campaigner
Lincoln Archives
Lincoln: The Presidential Archives

There is no better treatment for the life of the great President Abraham Lincoln than this interactive, "museum-in-a-book," which includes accessible text, photography, and removable documents that, combined, provide an educational and entertaining reading experience for the whole family.

Young Reader Book Titles

Moon Over Tennessee: A Boy's Civil War Journal

A moving personal narrative in the form of a journal, this powerful poem tells the story of one boy's journey into war

Abe Lincoln's Hat
Step into Reading

Abraham Lincoln, started out in life as an absent-minded lawyer. How did he nudge his memory? He stuck letters, court notes, contracts, and even his checkbook in his trademark top hat.

Abe Lincoln: The Boy Who Loved Books

Children of all ages will enjoy reading this book and realizing that a love of books, as Abraham Lincoln did, can change a persons life and move him or her to become a great person

The President Is Shot!
The Assassination of Abraham Lincoln

Grade 6-10 --Description of the violent end to Lincoln's life. Holzer provides the Civil War context of the event and then details April 14 and 15, 1865. Why Murder Lincoln?, to demonstrate that this president was not always the universally beloved icon that students see him as today.

The Big Book of the Civil War
Fascinating Facts

About the Civil War, Including Historic Photographs, Maps, and Documents

Freedom Train: The Story of Harriet Tubman

Harriet escaped North, by the secret route called the Underground Railroad. Harriet didn't forget her people. Again and again she risked her life to lead them on the same secret, dangerous journey.

Civil War Volume 1

Chester Comix with Content From the pages of the Daily Press in Newport News, Virginia comes Chester the Crab to teach kids about our country's past in colorful and witty comic books from the creative pen of Bentley Boyd. In the Civil War Volume 1 the War Between the States begins as the South secedes, the first fights break out, the Iron Giants clash and Antietam occurs.

A Yankee Girl at Fort Sumter

Tale of a girl and her family from Boston living in Charleston, SC during the months leading up to the beginning of the Civil War by the attack on Fort Sumter. The reader senses the inhunanity of slavery through Sylvia's experiences.

American Civil War Documentary Titles

Lincoln and Lee at Antietam
The Cost of Freedom

Lincoln and Lee at Antietam covers the entire struggle of the Antietam Campaign. The political concept about why Lincoln needed a Union victory and Lee's need to take the war north were covered as well as the battle.

Abraham Lincoln

Journey though the life of America's heroic President. The story begins at Lincoln's birth. The history of what led this man to the White House, his freeing of the slaves, and the Civil War; This story delves into his personal life, including Lincoln's affair with Ann Ruthledge and courtship of Mary Todd. Lincoln struggles through his debates with Douglas and in the end is assassinated
Lincoln Life and Legacy Documentary
Abraham Lincoln: His Life & Legacy

Comprehensive four-DVD set presents a complex portrait of a man who many consider to be our greatest commander-in-chief, but who considered himself "the loneliest man in the world." Bringing to life the tumultuous times in which Lincoln led his country, some of his finest Civil War moments, and his final hours

Unsolved History ~ Plots to Kill Lincoln
Discovery Channel

Before John Wilkes Booth fired that fatal shot in the balcony of Ford's Theater, President Lincoln was the target of at least five other assassination conspiracies.

Biography - Abraham Lincoln
Preserving the Union

Abe Lincoln's presidency in detail. The emotional tragedy and the humorus side of the man. His thoughts on the early commanders and dicussions with Historians. Pictures and details hard to find in other historical documentaries.

American Experience - Abraham and Mary Lincoln: A House Divided

Abraham Lincoln's legacy as the Great Emancipator reshaped the nation while his tragic death left Mary reclusive and forgotten.

History Channel Presents The Civil War

From Harper's Ferry, Fort Sumter, and First Bull Run to Shiloh, Antietam, and Gettysburg. The most legendary Civil War battles in brilliant detail. A selection of the soldiers and legendary leaders.

Gore Vidal's Lincoln

This a very personal view of President Lincoln and his relationship with his wife Mary.

United States White House
Information Services
US National Park Service

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