Thursday, February 16, 2012

Lincoln, Lincoln, I’ve Been Thinkin’

Professor Thomas Kelly, Lone Star College professor and historian, provided thought-provoking insights into Abraham Lincoln, the president and the man. In the Gettysburg Address, Lincoln's first sentence tells it all: “Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.”

Lincoln reminded our nation that the founding fathers really did mean that the United States of America is different and that our entire foundation is based on liberty and freedom for all.  In this succinct and pithy speech, Lincoln did not mention victory or the power of the Union army. He dedicated it to the brave men both living and dead who fought so their nation would survive.

Professor Kelly spoke of the Presidents who came before and after Lincoln. Lincoln was the product of many historical influences and changed his mind on occasion (such as freeing of the slaves). His assassination will forever influence history in how we perceive this great man. If he hadn’t died so suddenly and brutally, our perceptions of him might be quite different.

Visit the library’s exhibition, Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War, December 28, 2011 – February 17, 2012.

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