Life of Abraham Lincoln, Sixteenth President of the United States

Life of Abraham Lincoln, Sixteenth President of the United States

Author:
Frank Crosby
Author:
Frank Crosby
Format:
epub
language:
English

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Author: Crosby, Frank
Lincoln
Abraham
1809-1865
Life of Abraham Lincoln, Sixteenth President of the United States
Cover created by Transcriber, using an illustration from the original book, and placed in the Public Domain.

“If this country cannot be saved without giving up the principle of Liberty, I was about to say I would rather be assassinated on this spot than surrender it.”
From Mr. Lincoln’s Speech at Independence Hall, Philadelphia, February 21, 1861.
“I believe this Government cannot endure permanently half slave and half free.”
Springfield, Illinois, June, 1858.
“I am exceedingly anxious that this Union, the Constitution, and the liberties of the people shall be perpetuated in accordance with the original idea for which the Revolution was made.”
Trenton, New Jersey, February 21, 1861.
“Having thus chosen our course, without guile and with pure purpose, let us renew our trust in God, and go forward without fear and with manly hearts.”
Message, July 5, 1861.
“In giving freedom to the slaves, we assure freedom to the free; honorable alike in what we give and what we preserve.”
Message, December 1, 1862.
“I hope peace will come soon, and come to stay; and so come as to be worth the keeping in all future time.”
Springfield Letter, August 26, 1863.
“The world will little note, nor long remember, what we say here; but it can never forget what the brave men, living and dead, did here.”
Speech at Gettysburg, November 19, 1863.
“I shall not attempt to retract or modify the Emancipation Proclamation, nor shall I return to slavery any person who is free by the terms of that proclamation, or by any of the Acts of Congress.”
Amnesty Proclamation, December 8, 1863.
“I claim not to have controlled events, but confess plainly that events have controlled me.”
Letter to A. G. Hodges, April 4, 1864.
“With malice towards 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.”
Last Inaugural, March 4, 1865.



LIFE OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN,
SIXTEENTH PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES.

CONTAINING
HIS EARLY HISTORY AND POLITICAL CAREER; TOGETHER
WITH THE SPEECHES, MESSAGES, PROCLAMATIONS AND
OTHER OFFICIAL DOCUMENTS ILLUSTRATIVE OF
HIS EVENTFUL ADMINISTRATION.
BY FRANK CROSBY,
MEMBER OF THE PHILADELPHIA BAR.

Let all the ends thou aim’st at be thy country’s,
Thy God’s and Truth’s; then if thou fall’st
Thou fall’st a blessed martyr.

NEW YORK
INTERNATIONAL BOOK COMPANY
310–318 Sixth Avenue


DEDICATED
TO THE GOOD AND TRUE
OF THE NATION

REDEEMED​—​REGENERATED​—​DISENTHRALLED.


PREFACE.

An attempt has been made in the following pages to portray Abraham Lincoln, mainly in his relations to the country at large during his eventful administration.
With this view, it has not been deemed necessary to cumber the work with the minute details of his life prior to that time. This period has, therefore, been but glanced at, with a care to present enough to make a connected whole. His Congressional career and his campaign with Senator Douglas are presented in outline, yet so, it is believed, that a clear idea of these incidents in his life can be obtained.
After the time of his election as President, however, a different course of treatment has been pursued. Thenceforward, to the close of his life, especial pains have been taken to present everything which should show him as he was​—​the Statesman persistent, resolute, free from boasting or ostentation, destitute of hate, never exultant, guarded in his prophecies, threatening none at home or abroad, indulging in no utopian dreams of a blissful future, moving quietly, calmly, conscientiously, irresistibly on to the end he saw with clearest vision.
Yet, even in what is presented as a complete record of his administration, too much must not be expected. It is impossible, for example, to thoroughly dissect the events of the great Rebellion in a work like the present. Nothing of the kind has been attempted. The prominent features only have been sketched; and that solely for the purpose of bringing into the distinct foreground him whose life is under consideration.
Various Speeches, Proclamations, and Letters, not vitally essential to the unity of the main body of the work, yet valuable as affording illustrations of the man​—​have been collected in the Appendix.
Imperfect as this portraiture must necessarily be, there is one conciliatory thought. The subject needs no embellishment. It furnishes its own setting. The acts of the man speak for themselves. Only such an arrangement is needed as shall show the bearing of each upon the other, the development of each, the processes of growth.
Those words of the lamented dead which nestle in our hearts so tenderly​—​they call for no explanation. Potent, searching, taking hold of our consciences, they will remain with us while reason lasts.
Nor will the people’s interest be but for the moment. The baptism of blood to which the Nation has been called, cannot be forgotten for generations. And while memories of him abide, there will inevitably be associated with them the placid, quiet face, not devoid of mirth​—​its patient, anxious, yet withal hopeful expression​—​the sure, elastic step​—​the clearly cut, sharply defined speech of him, who, under Providence, was to lead us through the trial and anguish of those bitter days to the rest and refreshing of a peace, whose dawn only, alas! he was to see.
Though this work may not rise to the height required, it is hoped that it is not utterly unworthy of the subject. Such as it is​—​a labor of love​—​it is offered to those who loved and labored with the patriot and hero, with the earnest desire that it may not be regarded an unwarrantable intrusion upon ground on which any might hesitate to venture.
F. C.
Philadelphia, June, 1865.


CONTENTS

CHAPTER I.
BOYHOOD AND EARLY MANHOOD.
Preliminary​—​Birth of Abraham Lincoln​—​Removal from Kentucky​—​At Work​—​Self Education​—​Personal Characteristics​—​Another Removal​—​Trip to New Orleans​—​Becomes Clerk​—​Black Hawk War​—​Engages in Politics​—​Successive Elections to the Legislature​—​Anti-Slavery Protest​—​Commences Practice as a Lawyer​—​Traits of Character​—​Marriage​—​Return to Politics​—​Election to Congress 13
CHAPTER II.
IN CONGRESS AND ON THE STUMP.
The Mexican War​—​Internal Improvements​—​Slavery in the District of Columbia​—​Public Lands​—​Retires to Private Life​—​Kansas-Nebraska Bill​—​Withdraws in Favor of Senator Trumbull​—​Formation of Republican Party​—​Nominated for U. S. Senator​—​Opening Speech of Mr. Lincoln​—​Douglas Campaign​—​The Canvass​—​Tribute to the Declaration of Independence​—​Result of the Contest 19
CHAPTER III.
BEFORE THE NATION.
Speeches in Ohio​—​Extract from the Cincinnati Speech​—​Visits the East​—​Celebrated Speech at the Cooper Institute, New York​—​Interesting Incident 34
CHAPTER IV.
NOMINATED AND ELECTED PRESIDENT.
The Republican National Convention​—​Democratic Convention​—​Constitutional Union Convention​—​Ballotings at Chicago​—​The Result​—​Enthusiastic Reception​—​Visit to Springfield​—​Address and Letter of Acceptance​—​The Campaign​—​Result of the Election​—​South Carolina’s Movements​—​Buchanan’s Pusillanimity​—​Secession of States​—​Confederate Constitution​—​Peace Convention​—​Constitutional Amendments​—​Terms of the Rebels 60
CHAPTER V.
TO WASHINGTON.
The Departure​—​Farewell Remarks​—​Speech at Toledo​—​At Indianapolis​—​At Cincinnati​—​At Columbus​—​At Steubenville​—​At Pittsburgh​—​At Cleveland​—​At Buffalo​—​At Albany​—​At Poughkeepsie​—​At New York​—​At Trenton​—​At Philadelphia​—​At “Independence Hall”​—​Flag Raising​—​Speech at Harrisburg​—​Secret Departure for Washington​—​Comments 67
CHAPTER VI.
THE NEW ADMINISTRATION.
Speeches at Washington​—​The Inaugural Address​—​Its Effect​—​The Cabinet​—​Commissioners from Montgomery​—​Extracts from A. H. Stephens’ Speech​—​Virginia Commissioners​—​Fall of Fort Sumter 90
CHAPTER VII.
PREPARING FOR WAR.
Effects of Sumter’s Fall​—​President’s Call for Troops​—​Response in the Loyal States​—​In the Border States​—​Baltimore Riots​—​Maryland’s Position​—​President’s Letter to Maryland Authorities​—​Blockade Proclamation​—​Additional Proclamation​—​Comments Abroad​—​Second Call for Troops​—​Special Order for Florida​—​Military Movements 108
CHAPTER VIII.
THE FIRST SESSION OF CONGRESS.
Opening of Congress​—​President’s First Message​—​Its Nature​—​Action of Congress​—​Resolution Declaring the Object of the War​—​Bull Run​—​Its Effect 117
CHAPTER IX.
CLOSE OF 1861.
Election of the Rebels​—​Davis’ Boast​—​McClellan appointed Commander of Potomac Army​—​Proclamation of a National Fast​—​Intercourse with Rebels Forbidden​—​Fugitive Slaves​—​Gen. Butler’s Views​—​Gen. McClellan’s Letter from Secretary Cameron​—​Act of August 6th, 1861​—​Gen. Fremont’s Order​—​Letter of the President Modifying the Same​—​Instructions to Gen. Sherman​—​Ball’s Bluff​—​Gen. Scott’s Retirement​—​Army of the Potomac 137
CHAPTER X.
THE CONGRESS OF 1861–62.
The Military Situation​—​Seizure of Mason and Slidell​—​Opposition to the Administration​—​President’s Message​—​Financial Legislation​—​Committee on the Conduct of the War​—​Confiscation Bill 148
CHAPTER XI.
THE SLAVERY QUESTION.
Situation of the President​—​His Policy​—​Gradual Emancipation​—​Message​—​Abolition of Slavery in the District of Columbia​—​Repudiation of Gen. Hunter’s Emancipation Order​—​Conference with Congressmen from the Border Slave States​—​Address to the Same​—​Military Order​—​Proclamation under the Conscription Act 171
CHAPTER XII.
THE PENINSULAR CAMPAIGN.
President’s War Order​—​Reason for the Same​—​Results in West and South-west​—​Army of the Potomac​—​Presidential Orders​—​Letter to McClellan​—​Order for Army Corps​—​The Issue of the Campaign​—​Unfortunate Circumstances​—​President’s Speech at Union Meeting​—​Comments​—​Operations in Virginia and Maryland​—​In the West and South-west 181
CHAPTER XIII.
FREEDOM TO MILLIONS.
Tribune Editorial​—​Letter to Mr. Greeley​—​Announcement of the Emancipation Proclamation​—​Suspension of the Habeas Corpus in certain Cases​—​Order for Observance of the Sabbath​—​The Emancipation Proclamation 190
CHAPTER XIV.
LAST SESSION OF THE THIRTY-SEVENTH CONGRESS.
Situation of the Country​—​Opposition to the Administration​—​President’s Message 199
CHAPTER XV.
THE TIDE TURNED.
Military Successes​—​Favorable Elections​—​Emancipation Policy​—​Letter to Manchester (Eng.) Workingmen​—​Proclamation for a National Fast​—​Letter to Erastus Corning​—​Letter to a Committee on Recalling Vallandigham 226
CHAPTER XVI.
LETTERS AND SPEECHES.
Speech at Washington​—​Letter to Gen. Grant​—​Thanksgiving Proclamation​—​Letter Concerning the Emancipation Proclamation​—​Proclamation for Annual Thanksgiving​—​Dedicatory Speech at Gettysburg 242
CHAPTER XVII.
THE THIRTY-EIGHTH CONGRESS.
Organization of the House​—​Different Opinions as to Reconstruction​—​Provisions for Pardon of Rebels​—​President’s Proclamation of Pardon​—​Annual Message​—​Explanatory Proclamation 263
CHAPTER XVIII.
PROGRESS.
President’s Speech at Washington​—​Speech to a New York Committee​—​Speech in Baltimore​—​Letter to a Kentuckian​—​Employment of Colored Troops​—​Davis’ Threat​—​General Order​—​President’s Order on the Subject 275
CHAPTER XIX.
RENOMINATED.
Lieut. Gen. Grant​—​His Military Record​—​Continued Movements​—​Correspondence with the President​—​Across the Rapidan​—​Richmond Invested​—​President’s Letter to a Grant Meeting​—​Meeting of Republican National Convention​—​The Platform​—​The Nomination​—​Mr. Lincoln’s Reply to the Committee of Notification​—​Remarks to Union League Committee​—​Speech at a Serenade​—​Speech to Ohio Troops 285
CHAPTER XX.
RECONSTRUCTION.
President’s Speech at Philadelphia​—​Philadelphia Fair​—​Correspondence with Committee of National Convention​—​Proclamation of Martial Law in Kentucky​—​Question of Reconstruction​—​President’s Proclamation on the Subject​—​Congressional Plan 298
CHAPTER XXI.
PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1864.
Proclamation for a Fast​—​Speech to Soldiers​—​Another Speech​—​“To Whom it may Concern”​—​Chicago Convention​—​Opposition Embarrassed​—​Resolution No. 2​—​McClellan’s Acceptance​—​Capture of the Mobile Forts and Atlanta​—​Proclamation for Thanksgiving​—​Remarks on Employment of Negro Soldiers​—​Address to Loyal Marylanders 314
CHAPTER XXII.
RE-ELECTED
Presidential Campaign of 1864​—​Fremont’s Withdrawal​—​Wade and Davis​—​Peace and War Democrats​—​Rebel Sympathizers​—​October Election​—​Result of Presidential Election​—​Speech to Pennsylvanians​—​Speech at a Serenade​—​Letter to a Soldier’s Mother​—​Opening of Congress​—​Last Annual Message 325
CHAPTER XXIII.
TIGHTENING THE LINES.
Speech at a Serenade​—​Reply to a Presentation Address​—​Peace Rumors​—​Rebel Commissioners​—​Instructions to Secretary Seward​—​The Conference in Hampton Roads​—​Result​—​Extra Session of the Senate​—​Military Situation​—​Sherman​—​Charleston​—​Columbia​—​Wilmington​—​Fort Fisher​—​Sheridan​—​Grant​—​Rebel Congress​—​Second Inauguration​—​Inaugural​—​English Comment​—​Proclamation to Deserters 350
CHAPTER XXIV.
IN RICHMOND.
President Visits City Point​—​Lee’s Failure​—​Grant’s Movement​—​Abraham Lincoln in Richmond​—​Lee’s Surrender​—​President’s Impromptu Speech​—​Speech on Reconstruction​—​Proclamation Closing Certain Ports​—​Proclamation Relative to Maritime Rights​—​Supplementary Proclamation​—​Orders from the War Department​—​The Traitor President 362
CHAPTER XXV.
THE LAST ACT.
Interview with Mr. Colfax​—​Cabinet Meeting​—​Incident​—​Evening Conversation​—​Possibility of Assassination​—​Leaves for the Theatre​—​In the Theatre​—​Precautions for the Murder​—​The Pistol Shot​—​Escape of the Assassin​—​Death of the President​—​Pledges Redeemed​—​Situation of the Country​—​Effect of the Murder​—​Obsequies at Washington​—​Borne Home​—​Grief of the People​—​At Rest 374
CHAPTER XXVI.
THE MAN.
Reasons for His Re-election​—​What was Accomplished​—​Leaning on the People​—​State Papers​—​His Tenacity of Purpose​—​Washington and Lincoln​—​As a Man​—​Favorite Poem​—​Autobiography​—​His Modesty​—​A Christian​—​Conclusion 382
APPENDIX.
Mr. Lincoln’s Speeches in Congress and Elsewhere, Proclamations, Letters, etc., not included in the Body of the Work.
Speech on the Mexican War, (In Congress, Jan. 12, 1848) 391
Speech on Internal Improvements, (In Congress, June 20, 1848) 403
Speech on the Presidency and General Politics, (In Congress, July 27, 1848) 417
Speech in Reply to Mr. Douglas, on Kansas, the Dred Scott Decision, and the Utah Question, (At Springfield, June 26, 1857) 431
Speech in Reply to Senator Douglas, (At Chicago, July 10, 1858) 442
Opening Passages of his Speech at Freeport 459
Letter to Gen. McClellan 464
Letter to Gen. Schofield Relative to the Removal of Gen. Curtis 466
Three Hundred Thousand Men Called For 466
Rev. Dr. McPheeters​—​President’s Reply to an Appeal for Interference 468
An Election Ordered in the State of Arkansas
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