General Things You Didn’t Know About Abraham Lincoln

Things You Didn’t Know About Abraham Lincoln


Abraham Lincoln, 1809 – 1865
Born: 12 February 1809, Hardin County, Kentucky
Died: 15 April 1865, Washington City

Lincoln’s parents Thomas and Nancy were uneducated farmers, but they
lost their farm in court action related to the deed and moved to
Indiana. Lincoln’s mother died in 1818, his father remarried. In 1830
the Lincoln’s lost their farm, again in a matter related to the deed,
and settled on public land in Macon County, Illinois, then to another
homestead in Coles County, at which point Abraham, then 22, set out on
his own. He had only had about a year and a half of formal education
but was an avid reader. Although Thomas Lincoln was illiterate, he was
a great story teller and Abe practiced retelling those stories to his
friends, perhaps the basis for his oratory prowess.

He interrupted his
first political campaign in 1832 to join the militia during the Black
Hawk War but saw no action and returned to lose the race for a seat in
the Illinois General Assembly, but won in 1834. He immediately began
reading law and was admitted to the bar in 1837. He was a successful
litigator, apparently on the strength of his cross-examinations and
closing arguments. He was elected to one term in Congress as a Whig in
1846, then was moved to reenter politics in 1854 over the
Kansas-Nebraska Act which would have expanded slavery. He declined the
Republican vice-presidential nomination in 1856, then campaigned
against Steven Douglas in 1858. He narrowly lost the campaign but came
to national prominence in a series of debates. Having been
instrumental in creating the Republican Party, he was chosen over more
radical candidates to run for president in 1860 and defeated
candidates for three other parties. Before he was elected, seven
southern states seceded from the Union. In his first inaugural address
he supported the Corwin Amendment, which would have allowed slavery to
continue in the states that allowed it, in hopes of stopping the
secession. When Confederate troops attacked Fort Sumter shortly after
his inauguration, and four additional states seceded, Lincoln focused
primarily on the war effort, personally choosing and supervising
generals and their battle plans. In 1864, having formed the National
Union Party to include the “War Democrats” because it looked unlikely
that he would prevail, Lincoln was reelected by a wide margin when the
progress of the war improved. In addition to leading the country
through the Civil War, Lincoln signed the Homestead Act of 1862, the
Morrill Land-Grand Colleges Act the same year, the Pacific Railway
Acts of 1862 and 1864 which spurred development of the
trans-continental rail lines, and acts which created the national
banking system and the Department of Agriculture. Less than six weeks
after his second inaugural, and less than a week after Lee
surrendered, Lincoln was shot by John Wilkes Booth in the first
assassination of a US president.
Biography written by @Exactlymi

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