Abraham Lincoln

Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln (February 12, 1809 - 15 April 1865 at Washington) was the sixteenth President of the United States of America. He was elected to two terms of four years in 1860 and 1864 without completing it. It is the first Republican President of the country's history. His name is associated with the Civil War and the abolition of slavery. He died murdered as a result of a conspiracy by the confederates at the beginning of his second term.

Lincoln is a small provincial lawyer with no experience who becomes both a politician and an effective military leader at the time when the United States through the biggest crisis in their history. The election of a Republican anti-slavery causes immediate creation of the Confederate States of America composed of 11 slave states, and shortly after the Civil War. After initial setbacks, the United States Army under the command of General Ulysses S. Grant takes over. Lincoln wrote the proclamation emancipated the slaves and signs the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery. In his inaugural speech at the beginning of his second term, he is conciliatory towards the countries of the former Confederation and launched a reconstruction program that is not the day due to his assassination by an extremist pro-Confederate.

Abraham Lincoln was born on the Frontier on 12 February 1809, in a log cabin in Kentucky, located on a farm of 348 acres (1.4km ²) in the south-east of Hardin County and near Hodgenville. He suffers from Marfan syndrome. He is the son of Thomas Lincoln and Nancy Hanks, a couple of farmers are illiterate and without money. It is named Abraham, without a second name, in memory of his grandfather, killed by Indians in 1786. The myth has somewhat exaggerated the poverty of his parents at birth. Thus Thomas Lincoln was a respected and influential citizen in Kentucky profound. He joined the Baptist Church because of its anti-slavery sentiments.

From 1811, a judicial process aimed at depriving them of Lincoln farm. It results in 1816 and Thomas Lincoln decided to take his family in southwestern Indiana. There squat public lands in a half-built farmhouse that lacks a facade. After building a habitat more acceptable, he bought the ground and began his culture. Abraham participates in the work of the fields and livestock but is reluctant to hunting and fishing. In 1818, when he was 9 years old he saw his mother die at age 34, but in the years following his father married Sarah Bush Johnston, a widow with two daughters and one son. She handles the logistics and processes Lincoln tied with his own children. Abraham and Sarah become so close that later he will remember it as his "angel mother."

Abraham quickly developed a certain appetite for reading, passion encouraged by his stepmother Sarah. His parents were illiterate and he himself was only rarely went to school. Despite this, Lincoln could not have actually read a few books, however, he kept a souvenir. Throughout his reading, he discovered the Bible, the history of England and the United States. Among the books he had read, we find Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe, or the fables of Aesop. His neighbors reported later that he was prepared to travel miles to go and borrow a book.

In March 1830, when Abraham was 21 years, Thomas Lincoln decided to join the fertile lands of Indiana, on the edge of the Sangamon River. The following year, Abraham Lincoln, who do not wish to become a farmer, decides to lead an autonomous existence. After assisting his father in clearing new land, he becomes a sailor and a trip on the Mississippi to New Orleans. On return, he settled in the village of New Salem on the Sangamon River. He became a storekeeper, postal supervisor. In 1832 he joined the local militia to fight the Black Hawk Indians and was elected captain of his company. He later declared to have never seen Indian warriors, but have engaged in fierce disputes between militia.

Aspiring to have a public life, he was present at the meeting of the State as representative of the Whig party, but was defeated the first time before being elected and then re-elected several times. Hesitant, he preferred to finally become a lawyer rather than a blacksmith for a living. After having studied mathematics and grammar, he begins to study law. In 1836, he managed the bar exam.

A lawyer who turned to politics
In 1837, Lincoln moved to Springfield and began to practice.

He was re-elected four times as representative to the Board of Illinois. He then aspired to become representative of the Illinois House of Representatives in Washington.

He was elected in 1846 and sits at the end of 1847. In Washington, he opposed the war against Mexico, which he considered unconstitutional and unfair. Despite this view, voting several times to send additional troops. His views are considered anti-patriotic and cause discontent among the voters of Illinois, so Lincoln does not seek its renewal. During the war, his future opponent himself on the contrary by a reverse. Jefferson Davis, president of the Confederate States of America becomes a military hero.

Back in Springfield, it focuses on the legal profession and became famous, building up a large customer in Chicago. He defends including the Illinois Central Railroad to obtain a charter from the state. It fights against the County of McLean, who wishes to introduce a tax on the activities of this company. He receives 5 to 000 dollars this time, but must turn against the company for them. Among the cases he treats are also criminal cases. Defending Duff Armstrong, accused of murder, he must object to a witness claiming to have seen his client among the killers through the moonlight. On the basis of a single almanac, Lincoln argues that the moon could not allow the witness to see the scene and obtained an acquittal.

The career of exemplary lawyer helps to give Lincoln a reputation as a brilliant man, eloquent and honest.

On 4 November 1842, Abraham Lincoln married Mary Todd at the age of 33 years. The couple had four children:

* Robert Todd Lincoln, born on 1 August 1843, in Springfield, Illinois, died on 26 July 1926 in Manchester, Vermont.
* Edward Baker Lincoln, born on 10 March 1846, in Springfield, Illinois, died on 1 February 1850, in Springfield, Illinois
* William Wallace Lincoln, born on 21 December 1850, in Springfield, Illinois, died on 20 February 1862, in Washington DC
* Thomas "Tad" Lincoln: born April 4 1853, in Springfield, Illinois, died on 16 July 1871, in Chicago.

In a controversial book, The Intimate World of Abraham Lincoln, the psychologist and gay activist U.S. CA Tripp calls into question the love story of young Lincoln with Ann Rutledge, suggesting that may have had homosexual relations.

Abraham Lincoln was elected to the Congress of the United States while engaged in the legal profession. From this period, its anti-slavery are apparent but it is not in favor of voting for the black population. It is known as an advocate of railroad companies, but also by his speech against the admission of new slave states in the EU in particular is when the senatorial elections of 1858. The Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854, which repeals the limits of the spread of slavery (Missouri Compromise) presents Lincoln on the front of the political scene. Democratic Senator Stephen A. Douglas proposed a referendum on the issue of slavery in the territories in question. In 1858, Lincoln delivered a speech highlighting the danger of disunity in the country on the issue of slavery. His eloquence made him known to the general public.

Lincoln was chosen by the Republicans for the presidential election of 1860. He was elected on 6 November 1860 and became the 16th President of the United States with 39.9% of the votes, thanks to divisions within the Democratic Party. It flies and other candidates were Stephen A. Douglas (29.5%), John C. Breckenridge (18.1%) and John C. Bell (12.5%).

Following the election, while the new president has not yet invested, seven states secede: South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana and Texas. The last six will decide on 4 February 1861 to form the Confederate States of America that Lincoln refused to recognize. The states of Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Arkansas and Missouri decide to stay in the Lincoln but warn they will not accept the passage of troops on their territory.

Notwithstanding the many death threats he received, a secessionist conspiracy extremists to assassinate the new president before his inauguration was foiled on the morning of 23 February 1861 in Baltimore. In March 1861, he asserted that the Union could not be broken.


March 4: inauguration of Abraham Lincoln as the sixteenth President of the United States.

April 12: Beginning of the Civil War with the Battle of Fort Sumter in South Carolina, by Confederate forces. Three days later, Lincoln declared a state of insurrection and provides for the lifting of an army of 175 000 volunteers. The states of Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee and Arkansas secede.

End April: Lincoln orders blockade of Confederate ports of States and prohibits trade with them.

January 27: Lincoln signs the order to start military operations against the Confederate States.

May 20: The Law of Homestead Act was signed by Abraham Lincoln. It allows each family could justify it occupies land for 5 years to claim private property, within the limit of 160 acres (65 hectares). If the family lived there for at least 6 months, it can not wait to buy the land at a relatively low price of $ 1.25 per acre (or 308 dollars for 1 km ²). This law has played a prominent role in the conquest of the American West.

June 19: He starts to write the proclamation of emancipation of slaves.

1st July: it establishes the income tax to finance the War of Secession.

July 2: Morrill Land-Grant Colleges Act.

22 September: he announces that he will issue his proclamation of emancipation of slaves in the seceded States. It will create two amendments to the Constitution, the first abolishing slavery, guaranteeing the second civil rights.

January 1: the slaves were emancipated.

June 20: Lincoln incorporates West Virginia in the Union, West Virginia becomes the 35th state.

July 3: nordiste victory of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

October 3: Lincoln established the national holiday of Thanksgiving to the last Thursday of November.

November 19: Lincoln made a speech for the inauguration of the National Cemetery on the battlefield of Gettysburg.

December 8: Lincoln announces its program for the reconstruction of southern states and made an offer of amnesty to deserters from the Confederate Army.

March 12: Lincoln appointed General Ulysses S. Grant as commander in chief of the armies of the Union.

June 7: The national convention of the Republican Party means Lincoln as its candidate for next elections.

July 18: Lincoln ordered the recruitment of 500 000 volunteers in the army.

November 8: Lincoln is elected to a second term with 56% of the popular vote.

February 3: Lincoln tries one last time to end the American Civil War through negotiation. It demands the surrender of Confederate forces and the return of States in the Union. They want their independence and the meeting ends in failure.

March 4: inauguration of Abraham Lincoln for a second term.

April 9: end "official" of the American Civil War.

April 14: Abraham Lincoln often meets General Grant, commanding the Union troops to tackle the problems of reconstruction of the Southern States. During a trip to the Ford Theater in Washington (the play called Our American cousin), he was murdered by a Southern sympathizer. The latter, John Wilkes Booth, Lincoln enters behind him and shot at close range behind the head, the neck. The doctors come and see immediately that the ball has reached the brain. They carried him in a house opposite the theater where he spent the night without regaining consciousness. Lincoln died the next morning at 7 am 22. Booth thereafter cried "Sic semper Tyrannis! "(Latin:" Thus it is always tyrants! "). This quote is found in the hymn of Maryland, where Booth had met some success as an actor, and the Great Seal of the State of Virginia which is the official currency.


Foreign Policy
In terms of foreign policy the issue of secession of the southern states is limited to recognition of the Confederation of American States by other countries and Europe in particular. In fact they were mainly interested in the continuation of commercial relations and have avoided the federal support to establish risk of privileged relations between the EU and their competitors.

Domestic policy
Upon his election, A. Lincoln faces the problem of the secession of Southern states. In fact this secession and the creation of the Confederation by the southern states is not recognized by the States where the term "Civil War" used by the Americans (and not 'War secession 'in French literature). The objective of the war, always in the same spirit, is to preserve the Union.

Lincoln priority is the maintenance of the Union and the reintegration of breakaway states. It directly manages the operations of armed forces to find in the person of General Grant a chief in whom he can trust. The conduct of war requires men and financing; Lincoln introduced the service to offset the deficit of voluntary income tax. His contribution will remain the most famous Emancipation Proclamation freeing slaves in all States of the Union. Because of the war, A. Lincoln is one of the presidents who has accumulated the most power in his hands.

It will also create a system of national banks (National Banking Acts of 1863 and 1865).

Policy on civil rights, minorities and immigration
Before being elected president, and during his election campaign in particular, Lincoln had made several statements indicating clearly its opposition to slavery in the name of moral principles. It will go down in history as the author of the Emancipation Proclamation to slaves, but some critics have noted that its priority was linked to the restoration of the Union, not the civil rights of slaves. "If I could save the Union without freeing a single slave, I would if I could save that by releasing all, I would also ... This is my official position and has nothing to do with my personal beliefs... I have said often enough that I believe all men everywhere should be free..."

Despite its anti-slavery which are dictated by his moral sense, Lincoln did not believe in equality of races. Indeed, he goes on to say:

"... I say that I am not and I've never been in favor of social and political equality of black and white, I do not and I never wanted blacks become or voters or jurors are allowed to hold political office or they are permitted to marry whites. As the two races can live together, there must be, as long as they stay together, a lower and an upper position. I wish, as another, that the white occupies the top position."

Partisan politics
Lincoln was elected to the presidency largely because of dissension within the Democratic Party. During his tenure, he was criticized within his own party because the war is long and expensive and many Americans do not see any reason to fight for the rights of blacks. It will still be re-elected because the EU is rightly won on the battlefield for the vote.


* Abraham Lincoln and his wife Mary Todd had four children but only one of them reached adulthood. They have no descendants to this day.

* The best-known portraits of bearded Lincoln demonstrated then that he had a beard in the last years of his life. It seems that he left in 1860 to push the request of Grace Bedell, a little girl of 11 years.

* During the Civil War, Lincoln declared on the battlefield of Gettysburg speech in honor of the soldiers died for "the rebirth of freedom - a government of the people, by the people and for the people." The text, very short, is engraved on the monument which pays tribute to Washington and is regarded by Americans as a statement of major importance that primary students learn by heart.

* Four people were sentenced to death by a military court in the wake of the assassination of Lincoln. Among them, a woman who was the first to be executed by the U.S. government.

* Even before he was assassinated, Lincoln had already been the target of a shooter. Indeed, it was about to board his coach a shot broke. The ball has only cross the top of the President, missing his head a few centimeters.

* Abraham Lincoln was buried in Springfield, Illinois, in a crypt fortified built in 1901 as a result of threats against his body. Previously, his coffin had been moved 17 times since his initial burial in 1865 and it is open to 5 times: on 21 December 1865, on 19 September 1871, October 9 1874, 14 April 1887 and September 26 1901.

* Lincoln would have wanted his death three days before being murdered.

* An urban legend circulating on the Internet brings to astonishing coincidences between the lives of Lincoln and John Fitzgerald Kennedy, but it can be mitigated by a study (see Coincidences between Lincoln and Kennedy).

* In 2008, Lincoln remains the most "big" (1.93 m) of all the presidents of the United States.

Lincoln is one of the most admired presidents of American history: according to a ranking compiled by historians for the magazine The Atlantic Montly, it is the most influential American in history. His name was given to the state capital of Nebraska, a monument (the Lincoln Memorial) is erected in his honor at the center of the federal capital and its likeness appears on the coin as 1 ¢ on the $ 5 ticket It has also become a $ 100 bill issued on 10 March 1863 in Louisiana, which is one of the first ticket issued by the U.S. government after the National Banking Act was accepted in February 1863. His portrait is carved on Mount Rushmore and the places important in his life have been transformed into museums.

The anniversary of his birth was declared holiday (until the creation of the "Presidents Day" holiday to honor all presidents of the United States).

There is no doubt that the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, a few days after the end of the Civil War, prevented his contemporaries to criticize its actions. Some historians today is that it was much more concerned with the maintenance of the Union as the rights of slaves. Writer Jorge Luis Borges door to him even a more severe again, but this view remains isolated.

The U.S. Navy has thus honored his memory by naming several of its ships USS Abraham Lincoln. This is a submarine-launched missiles and a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier.

Up to 5 000 Americans, meeting in the Abraham Lincoln Brigade, participated in the International Brigades during the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939).(W3C)

Read also Alexander Graham Bell

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