Youth  |   Law Career  |   Political Career  |   Assassination  |   Sources

 

Young Life


 
 
 

Abraham Lincoln was born on February 12th, 1809, just outside of Hodgenville Kentucky. When he was two years old, his family moved to a farm in Knob Creek. They stayed there until December of 1816 when a lawsuit challenged his father Thomas' title to the farm. From there, Thomas and Nancy Lincoln took their children Abraham and his surviving sibling Sarah (the third child Thomas had died in infancy) to a stretch of public land in Indiana. Here the family built a log cabin to live in. The conditions were poor as nature seemed to have it out for Abe and his family, and soon after, his mother died in the fall of 1818. Abe lived one year motherless before his father remarried to a woman named Sarah. His stepmother encouraged his love of reading and learning, wanting to see her stepson become educated in ways that most of the family was not. In March of 1830, upon moving to Illinois, Abraham set out to find himself a career. Eventually, his love of learning broadened his career path as he taught himself law and became a lawyer after passing his bar exam in 1836.

Law Career


 
 

Lincoln partnered with a few lawyers during his time in Illinois, but his most notable partnership was with William H. Herndon. Their partnership was incredibly successful and not long after his law career kicked off, he was making wages on par with that of the state's governor. His career became even more profitable after he served as a lobbyist for the Illinois Central Railroad, as it lead him to become a regular attorney for said railroad. Over time, he became a very well known and respected lawyer for his fairness, honesty, and knowledge of the law, all of which assisted in him branching out into politics.

Political Career


 
 
 

At the start of his political journey, Lincoln associated himself with the Whigs, admiring the political ideology of Henry Clay and Daniel Webster. As a Whig member of state legislature, he put much focus on the economics of transportation, wanting to construct a series of railroads, highways, and canals. His ideas focused more on presidential politics once he was elected for his single Congressional term from 1847-1849. He spent his term promoting his party's nominee, but his own chances of presidency down the line were far from apparent at the time. Years down the line in 1856, as the Whig party dissolved, Lincoln migrated to the Republican party. After rising through the ranks of the party, Lincoln eventually became the candidate and president elect of the 1860 election. As president, Lincoln's main priority was the unity and safety of his nation, a job that was no easy task as the Civil War broke out. Lincoln maintained a stern desire to end the war swiftly and bring the Confederate states back into the Union. Upon the end of the war, he did begin to suggest motion towards more rights for African Americans, but he did not live long enough to see a full transition into freedom and equality for all races.

Assassination


 
 

On the night of April 14th, 1865, John Wilkes Booth shot President Lincoln where he sat in Ford's Theatre in Washington. The shot did not kill him instantly, but his injuries were impossible to recover from and Lincoln died the following morning.

Sources

https://www.britannica.com/biography/Abraham-Lincoln