This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Abraham Lincoln: America’s First Commander In Chief Essay

1951 words - 8 pages

Abraham Lincoln is best remembered as being America’s first war president. In the nineteenth century, the American presidency had seen nothing like the Civil War, and war was upon Lincoln before he or anyone else considered how the position of Commander-in-Chief fit into the Constitution. This resulted in an unorganized thought process and policy. Brian Dirck, author of the article “Lincoln as Commander in Chief,” writes:
He did not have the luxury of creating intellectually cohesive, internally consistent methods in the midst of the very messy business of civil war. Driven by circumstances and his own background to more or less improvise an approach to presidential warmaking [sic], Lincoln was above all else pragmatic and realistic, blending caution and boldness as circumstances required. (26)
Lincoln is sometimes criticized, but the fact remains that he had no predecessor who could be an example as Commander-in-Chief. Lincoln “laid the groundwork for succeeding American war presidents,” and he did so calmly and patiently (Dirck 21). Lincoln said concerning the Constitution in his first inaugural address, “No foresight can anticipate, nor any document of reasonable length contain express provisions for all possible questions” (“Washington, D.C., March 1861” 215). So the Civil War was something of a test for the American presidency, and Abraham Lincoln just happened to be given that test.
An important aspect of Abraham Lincoln’s overall performance is his personal and political background. Concerning his opinions on slavery, his personal background shaped his ideals in a very unique way. James McPherson, author of the short biography Abraham Lincoln, provides some insight into Lincoln’s background, writing that Lincoln’s father took his wages until he was twenty-one. This experience soured his opinion of slavery; in fact, it affected him so greatly that he did not stay in contact with his father, and he did not even attend his father’s funeral (3-4). Lincoln had direct experience with the effects of forced labor. He wanted to have pride in his country, and “slavery degraded manual labor by equating it with bondage” (McPherson, Abraham Lincoln 24). Manual labor is an essential part of the economy, and Lincoln wanted all Americans to be proud of their places in society because he saw the sociological and economical benefits of such a system. So Lincoln was certainly anti-slavery, and he took a political position against slavery as early as his congressional term from 1847 to 1849 (McPherson, Abraham Lincoln 13-14).
Another facet of Lincoln’s character is demonstrated by his moderate political policy. Steven Kautz writes, “Patriotism and the love of justice are . . . perhaps the great passions of republican politics. But moderation is ugly to the patriot. . . Lincoln was a moderate” (398). In a government previously and necessarily dominated mostly by patriots, Lincoln stood out as a moderate politician by rule of his quite personality. Kautz...

Find Another Essay On Abraham Lincoln: America’s First Commander-in-Chief

Abraham Lincoln His policies in the civil war

1020 words - 4 pages Clayton CampbellMrs. ReichardtAmerican History15 Dec. 2003LincolnAbraham Lincoln was born February 12, 1809. Who could have known this poverty-stricken boy would one day grow up to be one of the most famous and most popular presidents that we would ever have. Lincoln was born in an old log cabin, his dad was a migratory carpenter and farmer and his mother Nancy Hanks died in 1818, so little is known of her. Living his early life in Kentucky and

Abraham Lincoln, Issues in America during his Presidency and his Death

753 words - 4 pages Abraham Lincoln, became the 16th president of the United States of America on November 6, 1860. Beating out Stephen A. Douglas, John C. Breckinridge, and John Bell. Which was surprising since most of the South slave states disagreed with him resulting in the fact that no ballots were cast for him in 10 of the 15 South slave states. With that being said many say his victory was totally due to the strength of his supporters in the Northern and

Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King, and John F. Kennedy, What Do They all Have in Common?

923 words - 4 pages Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King, and John F. Kennedy, what do they all have in common? They stood for freedom and civil rights. There are many similarities between the cases, but are they all just a coincidence? I do not think so. There are several conspiracy theories regarding JFK's assassination, such as "LBJ had it done", "the military industrial complex did it", "the mob did it", "Oswald did it on his own as part of an unknown conspiracy

Abraham Lincoln, 16th president of the United States, who steered the Union to victory in the American Civil War and abolished slavery

2410 words - 10 pages North responded with enthusiasm, but the upper South seceded.Military LeadershipAs commander in chief, Lincoln encountered great difficulties in the search for capable generals. After the defeat of Irvin McDowell at the First Battle of Bull Run, the president appointed George B. McClellan to lead the eastern army but found him excessively cautious. His Peninsular campaign against Richmond, Virginia, the Confederate capital, failed, and Lincoln, whose

Abraham Lincoln: A Emancipator

868 words - 4 pages Abraham Lincoln is one of the most iconic president’s in US history, but he did he become so loved by the people. Well Abraham Lincoln’s leadership through the entire Civil War is the main reason he is remembered today. Another reason of course could be the fact that he was the first bearded president and wore a tall silk top hat a lot, but it’s probably the leadership part. Though who really was Abraham Lincoln, how did he act, and how was his

The Brilliant Life and Tragic Death of Abraham Lincoln

1770 words - 7 pages Gettysburg proved to be the turning point for the American Civil War. Shortly after the battle, Lincoln delivered his famed “Gettysburg Address” in 1863. The following year, the time would come for Lincoln to run for office yet again. Abraham Lincoln “was reelected in 1864 and beat George B. McClellan by a great majority” . The Civil War would eventually come to an end on April 9th, 1865, when General Robert E. Lee, Commander of the Southern Armies

the lincoln family

1756 words - 7 pages . Abraham Lincoln received his first military experience during Black Hawk War in 1832, where he helped to suppress Native American rebellion against European settlers in Illinois and Wisconsin. Same year he attempted to be elected to House of Representatives of Sangamon County, but failed. Two years later, he did get a seat in the County Representatives office; he was only 25 at that time (5).Since Abraham moved to Illinois, he had only one true

The Lincoln Family

1756 words - 7 pages . Abraham Lincoln received his first military experience during Black Hawk War in 1832, where he helped to suppress Native American rebellion against European settlers in Illinois and Wisconsin. Same year he attempted to be elected to House of Representatives of Sangamon County, but failed. Two years later, he did get a seat in the County Representatives office; he was only 25 at that time (5).Since Abraham moved to Illinois, he had only one true

Lincoln

2202 words - 9 pages impression on him was "Life and Memorable Actions of George Washington" by Mason Locke Weems. This book expressed the ideology of the United States' first commander and chief and some of the other founding fathers ("Abraham Lincoln"- MSN Encarta). "Lincoln made extraordinary efforts to attain knowledge while working on a farm, splitting rails for fences, and keeping store at New Salem, Illinois" ("Abraham Lincoln"- White House)From the books he read

The Assassination of Abraham Lincoln

951 words - 4 pages in cheife, he personally test fired weapons outside of the White House. As I said Lincoln was the commander in chief and he was the chief when the Civil War broke out. Lincoln did not move to Illinoise until he was 21 so he stayed in Kentucky throughout his childhood. His mom died when he was 9, she died of what people called a “milk disease”. When Lincoln was running the White House he never slept in his own bed in the White House, he said “He

Quarter 22 Research Paper

1317 words - 6 pages Abraham Lincoln is in fact one the most famous presidents of all times. He is known more many things including being the tallest president at a height of 6’4”, the famous top hat that he was often seen wearing and his assassination on April 14, 1865 , in the Ford Theatre located in Washington D.C by John Wilkes Booth. All these are facts that any American today would often tell you about the sixteenth president of the “United States” but most

Similar Essays

Abraham Lincoln: From An Innocent Child To The Chief Of A Bloody War

1216 words - 5 pages opposition as president because of his divergent moral views, ideas, decisions, and beliefs. Abraham Lincoln came from humble beginnings. He was born in Kentucky, in a log cabin on February 12, 1809 (Bio.com 1). His father’s name was Thomas and his mother’s name was Nancy. They lived on a small plot of land in a shelter, until Thomas was able to buy the family a new home somewhere else. When Lincoln was only at the tender age of nine, he lost his

Commander In Chief Franklin De Essay

1986 words - 8 pages first name and asked for his agreement on the proposal. Marshall did not agree and proceeded to say what he thought. "He got a startled look from his Commander in Chief and, as they were leaving, expressions of sympathy from the others (the cabinet members) at so quick an ending to so promising a tour of duty in Washington."(Pg. 96) Although, this did not end his career, but caused the president to later pass down 34 names on a list to pick Marshall

Where’s Abraham Lincoln In Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter?

645 words - 3 pages , mostly known for his fictitious “mash up” novels Pride and Prejudge and Zombies and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. Grahame-Smith has collaborated on two film adaptations, Dark Shadows, and his own novel, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. Seth Grahame-Smith and his wife, Erin, live in California with their two children Jacob and Joshua. Currently Grahame-Smith’s novel Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is being adapted for film, and Smith is said to be

Abraham Lincoln, A Great Leader In American History

960 words - 4 pages Throughout the history of the United States of America, many great people have directed toward success. The American nation has been honored with many of the greatest people in history, including George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, and James Madison. Abraham Lincoln is considered one of the most greatest president in US History. Abraham Lincoln was born on February 12,1809 in Hodgenville, Kentucky. He is known for his leadership and