I. Abraham Lincoln – The leader who shaped modern America
Abraham Lincoln was born on February 12th, 1809 and died on April 15th, 1865. He was the 16th President of the United States of America. He served as president of the country from 1861 to 1865 and one of the leaders of the Union representing states that against slavery during the American Civil War.
He grew up in a poor family. Thus, the man was known as a self-educated person. Despite his living condition, he then became a lawyer, a state legislator in Illinois, and a House of Representatives’ one-term member.
As a family man, he was known for being an affectionate husband and father of four children.
Lincoln was in the time of the American Civil War. Hence, as a president, he concentrated mainly on the dimensions of military and politic. He tried to find ways to end wars in the hope that the country would be reunified after the secession of the Northern and the Southern States.
His Emancipation Proclamation was issued in 1863, which approved the act of freeing 3 million slaves and abolishing slavery altogether. One of Lincoln’s famous sayings is “I am naturally anti-slavery. If slavery is not wrong, nothing is wrong.” Because of his effort and achievement, Abraham Lincoln has been honored and remembered as the "Great Emancipator".
Unfortunately, on April 14th, 1865, just six days after the Civil War ended (with the victory of the Union), Lincoln was assassinated by a Confederate’s sympathizer, John Wilkes Booth.
II. History context
4/3/1861: The division of the country into the Union (the North) and the Confederate (the South)
1861-1865: The American Civil war
9/4/1865: The Confederate surrendered the Union
14/4/1865: Abraham Lincoln was assassinated
1. The different between 2 parts of the country at that time
In the mid-19th century, the American economy was tremendously developed. Looking back at the history, people might acknowledge a huge difference in the economy of the country’s northern and southern parts. While the North were concentrating on heavy industry and manufacturing; the South were focusing mainly on its agriculture and large-scale farming. Large-scale farming depended on human resources to grow crops, thus, the Southern states’ economy required a large number of black slaves. They wanted to expand slavery westwards but the idea was opposed by the Northern states. A huge conflict arose, which then led to the country’s secession.
2. The division of the country: (4/3/1861)
In the 1860 presidential election, Abraham Lincoln won and became the 16th president of the United States. He, representing Republicans, opposed the idea of expanding slavery into the country’s western territories. On March 4, 1861, the day before Lincoln’s inauguration, seven slave states formed the “Confederacy” or the “South” (four more states joined after the Civil War was triggered). The anti-slave states that remained were known as the "Union" or the "North".