Abraham Lincoln was born on February 12, 1809. He was the 16th President of the United States of America. He served as president for 5 years, from 4th March, 1861 until his assassination by John Wilkes Booth on 15th April, 1865. Lincoln is famous for his leadership during the American Civil War (1861 – 1865) and for signing the Emancipation Proclamation. The Emancipation Proclamation is an executive order which changes the legal status of slaves to ‘free’. We all have known innumerable facts about Abraham Lincoln. Some of the famous and important facts about Lincoln are as follows:
(i) Lincoln, a highly self-educated man – Lincoln was a successful lawyer yet he did not have a degree for his qualification. His entire education summed up to total 1 year. He received most part of his education from travelling teachers.
(ii) Lincoln’s service to the Illinois state legislature – Usually lawyers are known for being manipulative and selfish but Lincoln was truly an exception. He was famous for his honesty and fairness. Resultantly, he helped Honest Abe’ win local elections through his trustworthiness and faith that people had in him.
(iii) Lincoln- the ‘president of firsts’ - He was the first bearded president of US. Alongside he was the first ever to hold a patent. He was also the first one to be in an inaugural photo.
(iv) Lincoln’s wife was extremely rich – Lincoln got married to Mary Todd of Lexington Kentucky, on November 4, 1842. Many of her half-brothers sacrificed their life during the Civil War.
(v) He was not an abolitionist- Lincoln was one person who was not at all supportive of slavery. He gave a new life to about 3 million slaves. He freed them by issuing the Emancipation Proclamation on 1 January 1863. Initially he believed that he had no right of interfering with the institution of slavery but later on he changed his mind and approach and overthrew slavery.
(vi) His motive was to preserve the Union – The war started on April 12, 1861 by firing. In response he sent troops to recapture lost forts and preserve the Union.
(vii) The bill to create the US Secret Service was on the President’s desk before the night of his assassination - One of the principal purposes of the Secret Service is to protect national leaders such as the President. It is possible that their presence would have saved Lincoln’s life.
(viii) Lincoln’s bodyguard was absent on the day of his assassination – Lincoln’s body guard was John Parker. He was absent at the time of Lincoln’s death. In reality no one knows that where exactly Parker was when Lincoln was killed.
(ix) Lincoln’s son was saved by brother of John Wilkes Booth - Edwin Booth, a famous actor at the time, pulled Robert Lincoln to safety at a train station after he had fallen on the tracks. It was just as a train was about to leave the station.
(x) Lincoln was consistently ranked as one of the ‘top 3’ Presidents of the United States – As per most of the polls conducted by the academic historians and others, Lincoln has always been ranked as one of the 3 all-time great Presidents.
By: Anuja Arora