English Comp II
February 10, 2011
There was a boy born in the dust and silence of the country side, in a little log cabin, to a modest family of uneducated hard working laborers. Life was hard, yet simple. Days were filled with hard work and a yearning to survive. The absence of ambition and education within the community ran as ramped as the hills and forests that surrounded the community where the boy grew. Yet that boy rose up out of the dust and the trees in search for something more. That boy grew up, and took America by the hand, guided it through one of them most important changes in history. Abraham Lincoln is the greatest leader the United States of America has ever had. Abraham Lincoln was driven, but it was his charisma that made him such a likeable man. He also had the gift of speech, writing and delivering in a manner that resonated with many. His path to Presidency came at an important and opportune time. Abraham Lincoln preserved the Union, without him, this country would be different. Most importantly Abraham Lincoln changed this country, in a time when opposition could not be fiercer, by freeing the slaves. Nancy Lincoln gave birth to Abraham on February 12, 1809 in Hardin (now Larue) Country, Kentucky. In 1816 Thomas Lincoln, Abraham’s father moved his family to Little Pigeon Creek in Perry (now Spencer) County, Indiana. The area was still wild, and wooded, the family had to tame and work the land. Two years after the family had settled in 1818, Nancy passed away. Thomas Lincoln remarried a year later. Sarah Bush Johnston, a widow herself, proved to be a kind and nurturing mother for Abraham. Life was filled with work, and not much time for education. It is said that Lincoln maybe received one year of formal education, split between five schools, spanning his childhood. When he was able to focus on his studies, he focused on penmanship, reading and arithmetic, yet most of his time was spent farming. Abraham was driven by a thirst for knowledge. He borrowed every book in the neighborhood and when those where done, he went on to read “Revised Statutes of Indiana”. In 1831 at 6’4” with a tangled tall statue at the ripe age of 22, Lincoln ended up in New Salem, Illinois waiting for a friend. While he was there, an election was taking place in town. One of the clerks had taken till and there was no one else who could write, Lincoln could and was immediately sworn in as clerk. This event sparked Lincoln’s interest for politics. (Abraham Lincoln biography) (Apple for teachers, 2009) Lincoln showed wonderful political ability on his road to the presidency. He first ran for office of the State Assembly in Indiana legislature and lost, but eventually ran again and was elected multiple times. Lincoln stepped away from politics; he spent about five years focusing on work rather than political matters. Then there was a political crisis that gave him a passion to run for office. In 1854 Abraham Lincoln’s political rival Stephen A. Douglas pushed a Bill through congress for reopening the entire Louisiana Purchase to slavery, also allowing Kansas and Nebraska to decide for themselves regarding slavery in those territories. The states of the Northwest opposed the Kansas-Nebraska Act. Lincoln disagreed with the opposition and was passionate about the matter and became a Republican in 1856. In 1858 Stephen Douglas was making a run for the leader of the Republican Party, which would ultimately lead to the Presidency. Lincoln still passionate about the opposition of the act ran against Douglas. Douglas and Lincoln partook in a series of debates. Lincoln and Douglas did engage in many heated political arguments, yet they were closer in their views than they seemed. Neither really wanted to end slavery and neither were really proslavery. But Lincoln, unlike Douglas, insisted that Congress must exclude slavery from the territories. Lincoln once...