A Week In History: the Election of Abraham Lincoln

Ian Brown

On November 6th, 1860, one of the United States’ most beloved and iconic presidents of all time was elected: Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln was born in Kentucky where he initially became a lawyer but soon made his way to the political spotlight in a Senate race that saw him argue against the spread of slavery. This principle of anti-slavery would later become what he was most known for in the political world, and the announcement of his presidency triggered several southern slave states to promptly secede from the Union. This conflict, of course, would soon flare up into the Civil War, which was easily the most prominent aspect of Lincoln’s presidency. Lincoln fought hard to preserve the United States as one country, and after 4 years of fighting leaving 620,000 soldiers dead, the war finally ended with our country intact. This accomplishment is one of the most significant of Lincoln’s presidency, along with his efforts to end the practice of slavery nationwide. The Emancipation Proclamation would free countless African American slaves from bondage in the case of a Union victory, and Lincoln also created the 13th Amendment to the Constitution to officially outlaw slavery in the U.S. Unfortunately, Lincoln was assassinated on April 14th, 1865, shortly after the end of the Civil War, while attending a play. Despite this abrupt end to his life and Presidency, Abraham Lincoln will always be known as one of the most important figures in American Politics.

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