Lincoln, Abraham (18091865)

Lincoln, Abraham, sixteenth President of the United States, born near Hodgensville, Kentucky; spent his boyhood there and in the Indiana forests, and picked up some education in the backwoods schools; passed some years in rough work; he was clerk in a store at New Salem, Illinois; became village postmaster and deputy county surveyor, and began to study law; from 1834 to 1842 he led the Whigs in the State legislature, and in 1846 entered Congress; he prospered as a lawyer, and almost left politics; but the opening of the slavery question in 1854 recalled him, and in a series of public debates with Stephen Douglas established his reputation as debater and abolitionist; unsuccessful in his candidature for the Senate, he was nominated by the Republicans for the Presidency, and elected 1860; his election was the signal for the secession of the Southern States; Lincoln refused to recognise the secession, accepted the war, and prosecuted it with energy; on New Year's day, 1863, he proclaimed the emancipation of the negroes, and was re-elected President in 1864, but shortly after his second inauguration was assassinated; he was a man of high character, straightforward, steadfast, and sympathetic (18091865).

Definition taken from The Nuttall Encyclopædia, edited by the Reverend James Wood (1907)

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