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Civil War History - Abraham Lincoln

                Abraham Lincoln Film Clips

The Depression and Humor of President Lincoln (National Park Service, 1956)

This 1956 article addressed the issue of Lincoln's depression:

"Lincoln's story telling proclivities were well known in his own time. On the old eighth circuit in Illinois his humor and fund of anecdotes were proverbial. What was not so well known was that the tall, homely man needed a blanket of humor to suppress the fires of depression, gloom, and sense of tragedy that almost consumed him".

Click here to read about Lincoln, the joke teller.


Myths About Lincoln (Literary Digest, 1929)

Myths After Lincoln is a book that documented many of the assorted tall tales that have, through the years, evolved in such a way as to have us all believe that Lincoln was a mystic who was blessed with dreams of foreboding.

The myth of Lincoln's funeral train appearing as an apparition once a year is discussed, as are the legends that John Wilkes Boothe, like Elvis, survived the Virginia barn fire, where he is believed to have died and escaped into the Western territories.


Abraham Lincoln: The Boy (National Park Service, 1956)

Following the death of his mother, Nancy Hanks, the future president was but six years old. Lincoln's father, Thomas Lincoln, then married Sarah Bush and the family moved to Indiana. The Lincoln family was poor and suffered hardships living in the Indiana wilderness but a bond was created between stepmother Sarah and the boy Abraham that was never broken. From the age of nine and throughout the rest of his life Lincoln would call her, "Mother".

These are the tender memories of his boyhood that she called to mind just five months after the assassination.


Abraham Lincoln: Inventor (Pathfinder Magazine, 1940)

"There, to a coterie of Lincoln addicts on Abe's 131st birthday, U.S. Patent Commissioner Conway P. Coe displayed a model of a device Lincoln patented in 1849, when he was still an unknown congressman from Illinois. Commissioner Coe read the patent application, in Lincoln's own handwriting, for a gadget to float flatboats in shallow water".


Abe Lincoln: Short Story Writer... (Gentry Magazine, 1956)

Reagan was the first actor to become president, Buchanan the first tailor, Jefferson the first architect and Abraham Lincoln was the first writer to move into 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue:

"The world has long known that Lincoln liked an occasional back-room story. Here is the only record - in his own handwriting - of that earthy side of the Great Emancipator."


The Prophetic Dreams of Abraham Lincoln (Literary Digest, 1929)

There are hundreds of stories concerning the life of President Lincoln. Some of them are true and some are not and we'll leave it up to other websites to decide; among the stories told are the ones that tell the tale of a Lincoln who had dreams of foreboding, dreams that came to him in the night and told of his own demise:

"Gradually she drove him into telling of his dream."
"'About ten days ago I retired late. I soon began to dream. Then I heard subdued sobs, as if a number of people were weeping. I thought I left my bed and wandered downstairs...I arrived at the East Room, which I entered. Before me was a catafalque, on which rested a corpse, wrapped in funeral vestments. Around it were stationed soldiers who were acting as guards, and there was a throng of people, some gazing mournfully...others weeping pitifully. 'Who is dead in the White House?' I demanded of one of the soldiers. 'The President,' was his answer. 'He was killed by an assassin.' Then came a loud burst of grief from the crowd which awoke me from my from my dream.'"

It was argued that slavery in the United States did not end in 1865...


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