Monday, June 29, 2015

Lincoln’s Wit/Wisdom 346

During his one and only term in the House of Representatives delegates remembered Lincoln’s answering a colleague's objection to federal improvement of the Illinois River because it ran through only one state, by asking through how many states the federally improved Hudson River ran.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Lincoln’s Wit/Wisdom 345

During one of the Lincoln-Douglas debates in 1858 Lincoln was accused of being two-faced. He responded by saying, 'I leave it to this audience to decide: if I had a face different to the one you see in front of you, don't you think I'd be wearing it?'

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Lincoln’s Wit/Wisdom 344

'Extemporaneous speaking should be practiced and cultivated. It is the lawyer's avenue to the public. However able and faithful he may be in other respects, people are slow to bring him business if he cannot make a speech.'
- Abraham Lincoln

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Lincoln’s Wit/Wisdom 343

Would you vote for this kid and give him a chance?
'Fellow citizens: I have been solicited by many friends to become a candidate for the Legislature. My politics are short and sweet like the old woman's dance. I am in favor of the national bank; I am in favor of the internal improvement system and a high protective tariff. These are my sentiments and political principles. If elected I shall be thankful; if not it will all be just the same.'
- Abraham Lincoln, Aged 23

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Lincoln’s Wit/Wisdom 342

'Everybody likes a compliment.'
- Abraham Lincoln

Friday, June 19, 2015

Lincoln’s Wit/Wisdom 341

‘Every man is said to have his peculiar ambition. Whether it be true or not, I can say for one that I have no other so great as that of being truly esteemed by my fellow man, by rendering myself worthy of their esteem’
- Abraham Lincoln

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Lincoln’s Wit/Wisdom 340

Lincoln chastising Congress [SOMEBODY WOULD WANT TO!]:
'Fellow-citizens we cannot escape history. We of this Congress and this administration will be remembered in spite of ourselves. No personal significance or insignificance can spare one or another of us. The fiery trial through which we pass will light us down in honor or dishonor to the latest generation.'
- Abraham Lincoln

Monday, June 15, 2015

Lincoln’s Wit/Wisdom 339

General Sherman a few weeks before the end of the war asked Lincoln explicitly whether he wanted the President of the Confederacy Jefferson Davis captured or allowed to escape. Lincoln replied: 'I'll tell you, General, what I think of taking Jeff Davis. Out in Illinois there was an old temperance lecturer who was very strict in the doctrine and practice of total abstinence. One day after a long ride in the hot sun he stopped at the house of a friend who proposed making him lemonade. When the friend asked if he wouldn't like a drop of something stronger in the drink he replied, “I'm opposed to it on principle.” “But,” he added with a longing glance at the bottle that stood conveniently at hand, “if you could manage to put in a drop unbeknownst to me I guess it wouldn't hurt me much.” Now, General, I am bound to oppose the escape of Jeff Davis; but if you could manage to let him slip out unbeknownst-like, I guess it wouldn't hurt me much.'

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Lincoln’s Wit/Wisdom 338

‘Great distance in either time or space has wonderful power to lull and render quiescent the human mind.'
- Abraham Lincoln

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Lincoln’s Wit/Wisdom 337

 ‘Had he [Lincoln] put the abolition of slavery before the salvation of the Union, he would have inevitably driven from him a powerful class of the American people and rendered resistance to rebellion impossible. Viewed from the genuine abolition ground, Mr. Lincoln seemed tardy, cold, dull, and indifferent; but measuring him by the sentiment of his country, a sentiment he was bound as a statesman to consult, he was swift, zealous, radical, and determined.'
- Frederick Douglass, ex-slave [11 years after Lincoln's assassination]

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Lincoln’s Wit/Wisdom 336 6/9

'He can compress the most words into the smallest ideas of any man I ever met.'  - Abraham Lincoln   

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Lincoln’s Wit/Wisdom 335 6/7

Lincoln ‘treated Negroes as they wanted to be treated - as human beings... Negro visitors to the White House were treated without false heartiness, but without any sign of disdain. Never condescending, Lincoln did not talk down to Negroes, nor did he spell out his thoughts in one-syllable language of the first reader.'
- Frederick Douglass, Ex-slave

Friday, June 5, 2015

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Lincoln’s Wit/Wisdom 333

'Honest old Abe, when the war first began,
Denied abolition was part of his plan;
Honest old Abe has since made a decree,
The war must go on till the slaves are all free.
As both can't be honest, will some one tell how
If honest Abe then, he is honest Abe now?'

- Civil War doggerel

Monday, June 1, 2015

Lincoln’s Wit/Wisdom 332


Horace Greeley, the editor of the New York Tribune, had on many occasions attacked the Lincoln administration for any number of reasons. But on Lincoln's death he wrote arguably the most prescient obituary of Abraham Lincoln ever penned, one that any of us might justifiably long for: 'He was not a born king of men but a child of the common people who made himself a great persuader, therefore a leader, by dint of firm resolve, patient effort, and dogged perseverance. He slowly won his way to eminence and fame by doing the work that lay next to him - doing it with all his growing might - doing it as well as he could, and learning by his failure, when failure was encountered, how to do it better. He was open to all impressions and influences and gladly profited by the teaching of events and circumstances, no matter how adverse or unwelcome. There was probably no year of his life when he was not a wiser, cooler, and better man than he had been the year proceeding.'