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Lincoln "by littles"

by Lewis E. Lehrman
Excerpts from
Lincoln "by littles":

"The self-tutored lawyer from Illinois could not understand those 'don't care' politicians, such as Senator Stephen A. Douglas, who pretended indifference to involuntary servitude."

"For Lincoln, there could be no retreat from the fundamental principles of the Declaration of Independence."

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Lincoln by Littles

Abraham Lincoln In Depth

Abraham Lincoln In Depth

Lincoln's Cooper Union Address

The stakes were high for Abraham Lincoln's first political speech in New York City - and the first one in the East since he had left Congress more than a decade before. He had a reputation in the East for his seven Lincoln-Douglas debates but little exposure to Re...

Abraham Lincoln & Freedom

Abraham Lincoln & Freedom

Martin Delany

Dr. Martin Delany was the highest ranking black commissioned officer in the Civil War — but the road to that distinction was a long one. "As early as October, 1861, Dr. Delany, when en route to Chicago, stopped at Adrian, Michigan, for the purpose of seeing Presi...

Abraham Lincoln's White House

Abraham Lincoln's White House

The Stables

The stables on the East side of the White House housed several of the Lincoln pets as well as their horses. Although the President himself frequently rode on horse back and forth to the Soldiers' Home, when he went out for a ride with Mrs. Lincoln in the afternoon...
Abraham Lincoln:
The Impact on the War, Part A
Abraham Lincoln:
The proclamation, Part A
Abraham Lincoln:
New Years Day Reception

Abraham Lincoln & Friends

Abraham Lincoln & Friends

Members of Congress

"The gossip around the Capitol in Washington among Senators and Representatives is a very poor gauge of public sentiment in the country toward a President," observed Illinois politician Shelby M. Cullom. "I was in Washington a few months before the second nominatio...

Abraham Lincoln & New York

Abraham Lincoln & New York

Pre-Inaugural Visit

President-elect Lincoln's trip across the country in February 1861 has often been ridiculed for the banality and naivete of Mr. Lincoln's comments along the way. He tried mightily to say nothing that might be used as an excuse by residents of other Southern state...

Lincoln's Contemporaries

Abraham Lincoln's Contemporaries

Abraham Lincoln and Ulysses S. Grant

General Ulysses S. Grant came to the attention of President Lincoln and the nation when in February 1862 Grant captured two Confederate garrisons on the Tennessee River, Fort Henry and Fort Donelson. "U. S." Grant got the nickname "Unconditional Surrender" Grant a...

Featured Article

by Lewis E. Lehrman

They were big men. George Washington was 6-foot-3. Abraham Lincoln was almost 6-4. Their ambitions were equally big -- first for themselves, and then for the nation they would lead.

As young men, both future presidents trained as surveyors at periods when Americans were preoccupied by the development of the frontier and the acquisition of land. Historian John Ferling wrote: "Starting around age fifteen, George learned surveying through self-help books, such as `The Young Man's Companion,' and it is probable that he was tutored by some of the surveyors employed by the Fairfaxes." In his search for self-improvement, 16-year-old Washington famously wrote out the rules for life and behavior from "Rules of Civility & Decent Behavior in Company and Conversation." That pursuit would continue the rest of his life.

Surveying helped define both men. In 1834 Abraham Lincoln was named as a deputy surveyor of Sangamon County in Illinois; George Washington had been appointed as Culpepper County surveyor in 1749. Ferling observed that, "surveying ... was a respectable and often lucrative occupation in Washington's Virginia, as the population was growing and new frontiers were opening steadily."

A Project of
The Lehrman Institute
Lewis E. Lehrman, Founder
When using this research please
acknowledge The Lehrman Institute
and The Lincoln Institute.
Lincoln at Peoria

Lincoln at Peoria
The Turning Point
by Lewis E. Lehrman
Lincoln at Peoria explains how Lincoln's speech at Peoria on October 16, 1854, was the turning point in the development of his antislavery campaign and his political career and thought.


April 22, 1864 Navy Secretary Gideon Welles writes in his diary: “Neither Seward nor Chase nor Stanton was at the Cabinet-meeting to-day. For some time Chase has been disinclined to be present and evidently for a purpose. When sometimes with him, he takes occasion to allude to the Administration as departmental,– as not having council, […]...Read More
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