Abraham Lincoln

Abraham Lincoln

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Lifetime Highlights

 

  • 1809 -Thomas and Nancy Hanks Lincoln lived in a log cabin located on the Big South Bend of Nolin’s Creek, in Hardin now Larue County, Kentucky.1 On Feb. 12th, Nancy gave birth to a boy, whom they named Abraham after Thomas’ father.2
  • 1816 – The Lincoln family moved to Indiana where land ownership was more stable, and where slavery was forbidden by the Northwest Ordinance of 1787.3 Here the family continued to farm, and young Lincoln felt his life was”a fight with trees and logs and grubs”.
  • 1818 – Nancy Hanks Lincoln became ill and died from “milk sickness”. In 1819, Thomas married a Kentucky widow named Sarah Bush Johnston.4
  • 1828 – Abraham’s older sister and her newborn baby died. A younger brother had also died in infancy years earlier.
  • 1830 – The Lincoln family moved to Illinois, still searching for the best farm land and ownership protection.5
  • 1831 – Young Abraham left his family behind and moved to New Salem, near Springfield, IL.6
  • 1832 – Lincoln served briefly in the Black Hawk War,7 and ran unsuccessfully for the Illinois Legislature.8
  • 1834 – Lincoln ran again for the Legislature, and as a Whig was elected.9
  • 1836 – Abraham Lincoln became a lawyer, and built a successful practice.10
  • 1841 – Lincoln ended his tenure in the Illinois Legislature, after four successive terms.
  • 1842 – Lincoln married Mary Todd on Nov. 4th.11 They had four sons, Robert Todd, Edward Baker, William Wallace, and Thomas Tad.
  • 1847-1849 – At 38, Lincoln became a member of the Illinois House of Representatives.12
    He did not run again, but went back to his practice in Springfield. He lost interest in politics until Senator Stephen Douglas proposed the Kansas Nebraska Act, which opened lands previously prohibiting slavery to the possibility of its spread by popular soverenity.13
  • 1850 – Edward Lincoln, second son of Abe and Mary, died.14
  • 1855 – Lincoln vied for the US Senate, but struggled and eventually threw his support to Lyman Trumbull.
  • 1856 – Lincoln joined the newly formed Republican Party.15
  • 1858 – Abraham Lincoln accepted the Republican Senatorial nomination. He also suggested that Judge Douglas, Chief Justice Roger B. Taney, and Democratic Presidents Franklin Pierce, and James Buchanan had conspired to nationalize slavery. In this same speech, Lincoln made known his view that the nation would become either all slave or all free: “A house divided against itself cannot stand.”16
  • The seven Lincoln – Douglas Debates which ensued as the race for the senate seat drew closer were the perfect setting for Lincoln to stress the great gulf of principle which separated the Republican and Democratic views. He won the debates and national fame, but lost the Senate seat to Douglas.17
  • 1860 – Lincoln campaigned for President against James Buchanan, and was elected on Nov.6, 1860.18
  • 1862 – William Lincoln, third son of Abraham and Mary, died.19
  • 1863 – The preliminary Emancipation Proclamation of Sept. 22, 1862 was made final on Jan.1, 1863 when Lincoln officially signed the document.20
    Also, the Gettysburg Address was presented during the dedication of the Cemetery on Nov.19th.21
  • 1865 – The surrender ceremony between Generals Grant and Lee took place on April 12.22
    On April 14, southern-sympathizer and actor, John Wilkes Booth, entered the Presidential box at Ford’s Theatre and shot Lincoln.23 Lincoln died on the morning of the 15th.
    The Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, which Lincoln had endorsed, was passed by the House of Representatives and ratified by the required number of states. It officially abolished slavery everywhere in the United States.24

Lincoln Sources available in the collection of Fenton History Center

  • Abraham Lincoln, Memorial Services – George Bancroft
  • Abraham Lincoln, Biography – Joseph H. Barrett
  • Lincoln on Democracy – Mario M. Cuomo
  • The Life of Abraham Lincoln – J. G. Holland
  • Abraham Lincoln 1809-1865, Juvenile Literature – Harold Holzer
  • Abraham Lincoln, Lincoln-Douglas Debates – John A. Logan
  • Abraham Lincoln, Anecdotes – J. B. McClure
  • Abraham Lincoln, Biography – Henry J. Raymond
  • Abraham Lincoln, The Prairie Years – Carl Sandberg
  • Abraham Lincoln, The War Years – Carl Sandberg
  • In the Footsteps of Lincoln – Ida M. Tarbell
  • The Life Of Abraham Lincoln – Ida M. Tarbell

 

Works Cited:

1. Sandberg, Carl, Abraham Lincoln The Prairie Years, New York, Harcourt, Brace & Company, 1926, Vol I, p.15

2. Ibid., p.16

3. Ibid., p.25

4. Ibid., p.41

5. Ibid., p.104

6. Ibid., p.133

7. Ibid., p.154

8. Ibid., p.161

9. Ibid., p.184

10. Holland, J. G., The Life of Abraham Lincoln, Springfield, Mass., Gurdon Bill, 1866, p.64

11. Ibid., p.90

12. Ibid., p.100

13. Tarbell, Ida M., The Life of Abraham Lincoln, New York, Lincoln Historical Society, 1924, Vol. II, p.103

14. Cuomo, Mario M., Lincoln on Democracy, Cornelia and Michael Bessie Book, 1990, p.374

15. Tarbell, Ida M., The Life of Abraham Lincoln, New York, Lincoln Historical Society, 1924, Vol. II p.118

16. Ibid., p.132

17. Ibid., p.163

18. Barrett, Joseph H., Cincinnati, Moore, Wilstach & Baldwin, 1865, p.197

19. Cuomo, Mario M., Lincoln on Democracy, Cornelia and Michael Bessie Book, 1990, p.384

20. Tarbell, Ida M., The Life of Abraham Lincoln, New York, Lincoln Historical Society, 1924, Vol. II p.188

21. Sandberg, Carl, Abraham Lincoln The War Years, New York, Harcourt, Brace & Company, 1939, Vol. II, p.469

22. Pollard, E. A., The Early Life, Campaigns, and Public Services of Robert E. Lee, New York, E. B. Treat & Co., 1871, p.165

23. Holland, J. G., Life of Abraham Lincoln, Springfield, Mass., Gurdon Bill, 1866, p.520

24. Cuomo, Mario M., Lincoln on Democracy, Cornelia and Michael Bessie Book, 1990, p.388