Happy Birthday Abe

February 12th is the 200 birthday of Abraham Lincoln. Arguably one of our greatest presidents, Lincoln will be remembered and honored throughout the country. Presidential scholars, Civil War aficianados and history buffs will use this day and this year to analyze what made Lincoln such a great  figure, a true American icon.

The greatness of Lincoln is often associated with his response to our nation’s most serious crisis, as North and South divided this country for four long years. Lincoln is credited with saving the Republic and giving his life to preserve the Union, which is why the United States of America owes an eternal debt of gratitude to Lincoln’s for his fierce determination to keep the country one and whole.

But Lincoln was much more than a uniter and savior of the Union; he was a superb politician, a great orator, a brilliant writer, a moral visionary and a no nonsense commander in chief. In short, Lincoln possessed all the qualities that we Americans hope our national leaders will develop. It would be reassuring to know that there are many Lincolns in public life, but sad to say there are few.

Most of us remember Lincoln for his Gettysburg Address, perhaps the most moving speech in the history of our country, and his Emancipation Proclamation, that began the long journey of African-Americans to freedom. But not all of us know that Lincoln was a savvy manager of his closest advisors, who were competitors for power rather than loyal servants of the national interest. Not all of us know that Lincoln often took personal control of battlefield strategy when faced with a corps of generals who were either incompetent or reluctant to fight. And not all of us know that Lincoln was willing to suspend some Constitutional guarantees in order to preserve order and security during time of war.

As many great leaders during a national crisis, Lincoln was never that popular, and certainly was hated by those in the Confederacy. Lincoln was a lonely leader who carried the burden of the office on his shoulders, which led to what many historians now view as serious fits of depression. Those pictures from the last year of his life as President show a man emotionally devastated and deeply saddened by the enormous challenges that he faced on a daily basis.

So these next few days and this entire year will be a time to pay homage to a great man and a great president, who gave his life for our nation. Happy Birthday, Abe.

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30 Responses to Happy Birthday Abe

  1. Annie says:

    As seen on an Athens, GA newspaper headline: “Abe at 200: Georgia Shrugs”… I find this hilarious.

  2. woof woof says:

    I agree with this article. Abraham Lincoln was one of our greatest presdents and deserves to be honored on this special day. He did all that was in his power to help make our country what it is today.

  3. Funk Method 3000 says:

    Abraham Lincoln was most definitely a political “jack-of-all-trades”, and his contributions to this country, during both that time period and today’s modern society, total just shy of innumerable. Congrats on the bicentennial, Abe!

  4. The Phenix says:

    Agreed. Abraham Lincoln was really an awesome person, a considerable man who did a great amount for his country. He was the glue that was used to repair the broken seal, and this month honors him.

  5. mickey howe says:

    Lincolns infulence on Americas History was great. I think that this article outlines that fact very well. Americans today should learn from what Lincoln did and try to make themselves more like him.

  6. Scott Leech says:

    Abraham Lincoln was not just one of the greatest presidents in American history, but also is one of the greatest Americans in history. He represented the American way of life. Abe Lincoln grew up on the ideals of hard work and honesty that are the backbone of our nation. As president he fought for the what was right and stood fast in his beliefs. Never give up and never give in when you’re fighting for what’s right. This is what Lincoln stood for and his values are still important to us today.

  7. Kathryn says:

    In the year 1861,Abraham Lincoln,in my opinion, established himself as one of our greatest presidents. He relieved us from years of hardship and saved the Union, while simoultaneously freeing the slaves. I agree fully with your view of how wonderful and talented he was and how successful he was as president of the United States. In his short four year term, he achieved great accomplishments and helped to shape the way that we know America today. He will forever be remembered as a wonderful, kind and great emancipator, each day as the United States continues to grow and create stronger bonds, Abraham Lincoln will be revered. Coming from a poor background he established a new way of “coming into your own” so to say, by teaching himself all he knew and becoming one of the gretest presidents the United States has seen. Happy belated Birthday!

  8. Renee says:

    I admire Abraham Lincoln’s determination and confidence in what he believed would be the best for the country.He was a “one of a kind” man who made great changes to our history.

    In school, we are constantly told to be that one person who can change the world. For many of us it’s hard to catch that break, but Abraham Lincoln grew up in the simple life and ended up being one of the greatest presidents this country has seen. His use of words and humble personality drew citizens towards him, not to mention the fact that every decision he made was an effort to keep our country a strong united nation.

    We should all be entirely greatful to Abraham’s bold decisions that has kept us together!

  9. Lincoln was but a building block for the nation that we have today. I applaud Senor Abe for his efforts during a time that the nation was no longer one. Conflicting ideas spread throughout the nation causing uproar and unrest, but thanks to one man, it was solved but along with mass bloodshed. I wrote a short story about Abe’s influence during the Battle of Gettysburg and how he was able to take control of his officers and force a victory for the North that would eventually lead to a victory over the Confederacy. He would reach his goal of preserving the Union but he would also save an entire race from further burden and hardship while being enslaved by southerners. For today, it is nice to see a President so much devoted to a man that was basically left alone for a long time.

  10. MagdaW says:

    Abraham’s Lincoln’s legacy is still remebered to this day and it will always be remembered. We are the United States today because of what Abraham Lincoln did in his term as President. His actions and brilliant words will always be cherished in our nation.

  11. We live our lives in a world full of moral ambiguity and total ignorance for differences in our fellow man. On February 9th 1809, a baby was born to a simple Kentucky family that struggled to fit into the small log cabin that it called home. This baby would become the 16th president of our United States, and one of the greatest leaders that our country has ever seen. Surmounting race and inequality were the battles that he fought on the front lines during his time in office, and, sadly, they are the battles that we still fight today. This buisness, classified as Honest Abe as “unfinished”, is a true representation of what our country really is. Abe Lincoln made the United States a glorious country, and for that, we are eternally grateful. Happy birthday, big guy.

  12. Emily says:

    I agree with this article and think it is an accurate outline of Abraham Lincoln’s enormous impact on the United States. By going against the people’s opinion at times and risking his popularity as President he proved that he really was dedicated to preserving our union, whatever it took to do so. We should definitely celebrate his birthday as a holiday and show our support of him by living up to his ideals.

  13. Rebecca says:

    Lincoln stood by his beliefs and took whatever measures were necessary not only to keep the nation together, but also to free the slaves. In his Gettysburg Address, while Lincoln honored the soldiers that fought in the war, he also pushed those still standing to continue what they had been fighting for. This remains our nation’s enduring legacy to keep fighting for what we believe in.

  14. mrenn15 says:

    Abraham Lincoln certainly leaves a legacy in our nation’s history. Abraham Lincoln will be remebered for many things, one of them would be the emancipation of the slaves, and the desire to create a equal environment for all United States citizens. In the world today there are still inequalities in our society. Considering the fact that Abraham was assasinated within his term of office, some might veiw Barack Obama presidency as a continuation of Lincoln legacy and values. Some of Lincoln’s goals were unfortunatly never reached. Hopefuly Obama can try to fill the shoes of Lincoln, and furfill his dreams.

  15. Surmonting race and the struggle to attain equality for all, are challenges that still rear their ugly heads in our society today. By and by, our country struggles with radical differences and pure ignorance that is fueled by powerhouse outlets like advertisements and music videos. If Abe Lincoln was alive, he would not stand for this.

    Happy B-day!

  16. Emma C says:

    I think that Abraham Lincoln had a lot to deal with during his presidency and that he dealt with many issues however he could fix them. He had to deal with slavery and hatred of the south against the north. He went against the confederacy and stood up to the corruption with the “spots resolution” that started off in the Mexican American war. He fought for justice and equality trying to prove that we had no right to fight against them because the first spot of blood was not spilled on American soil. No matter what Abraham Lincoln did he did the right thing for the country not for himself.

  17. Melani H. says:

    In my opinion, Lincoln was motivated by former aboltionists, like Frederick Douglass, and set forth equal rights for African Americans. The Emancipation Proclomation was like a “spring board” for others after Lincoln to continue to defend the rights for equality. The Civil War was fought to preserve the Union, but the underlying conflict between the North and the South was over slavery. From that time on our country has made strides in accepting that everyone is equal, but still unfinished business remains to be done.

  18. Andrew says:

    Happy birthday Abe. I know that if you were alive you would be pleased to hear that the president of the United States is African-American. If it wasn’t for you, this could have never happend. (Even though he is not as good as you). But, never-the-less the issues that you helped courageously defend still exist today. There is still racism and prejudices in our society that need to end. But, we will have to wait until another great president like you enters the oval office.

  19. Alisan says:

    We all know that Abe Lincoln played a big part in preserving the union. What this article does is give us some facts about Lincoln that I had forgotten. Yes Lincoln sometimes took control of battlefield strategy and was willing to limit constitutional rights in order to preserve the union. Acts like those made him the great president he was.

  20. Abraham Lincoln, clearly, was a man of awsome accomplishments. From the Gettysburg Address to the Emancipation Proclaimation he has definately made a huge impact on our country. Without a doubt, he will be remembered forever throughout history. Without him who knows what our country would be like today. We are in need of a modern day Lincoln. More leaders today need to try and imitate Abraham Lincoln. Not just by their words but by their ACTIONS. So many politicians today are all talk and don’t seem to take action! President Obama is a perfect example of this. He’s has been talking a lot, lets see what he actually does. Could he be our modern day Licoln? He could very well be. But lets see how all of his plans work out.

    By the way Happy Birthday bAbe!

  21. Steph G says:

    This is a well-written description Abe Lincoln’s accomplishments as president. I agree with many of the points you have made. Lincoln worked so hard to make our country better and really deserves all of the hype. What he did for the Union and for the African American community in the Emancipation Proclamation, whether or not it was his main motive, was incredible. Lincoln fought for what was right and not just what the general public wanted. The leaders of our nation today could learn a thing or two from Lincoln’s determination and ambition. Lincoln’s postive effect on our country will never be forgotten. Happy belated Birthday Abraham Lincoln!

  22. We thoroughly agree with this article. Abe Lincoln was a fantastic president and did much more than just free the slaves. He was not only a powerful leader, but left his legacy for future presidents, leaving large shoes to fill. (And he looks great on the penny!) We am grateful that our wonderful history teacher was able to open our eyes to such a great bearded man. HAPPY BIRTHDAY ABE!!!!!

  23. K. Sullivan says:

    Abraham Lincoln was no doubt, one of our country’s greatest presidents. He did what he had to do to preserve the Union, and ended perhaps the most terrible tradition our country used to practice: slavery. His honesty, integrity, and determination allowed him to make the right decisions for our country at a time where one bad choice could end in disunion. He gave everything for his country, and his memory will live on in honor forever. It was exactly right to remember him on this most special of days, because he made so many positive changes during his presidency that would have dramatically altered the principles of the USA if he didn’t do what he did.

  24. Lauren says:

    Abraham Lincoln is one of the most influential presidents in American history. He did so much and one of his greatest accomplishments was freeing the slaves. He did anything in his power to achieve what was right for his country and other presidents should learn from him. Lincoln definitely deserves to be honored in this bicentennial year.

  25. Amanda says:

    Abe lincoln is definitely one of the most memorable presidents in United States History. He tried to achieve as many things as possible during his time to better our country. I agree with many of the points throughout this article that Abe was a hardworking and honorable president. Abe is a greatly influential president that will always be remembered.

  26. meow meow says:

    Lincoln’s presidency has forever changed our lifetime. This one man’s persistance led to the freedom of slaves and brought about unity in our country. Lincoln’s contributions to America will forever be known as the most life changing and also the greatest. Lincoln will forever be known as one of the memorable men in history his leagacy will live forever. Even after 200 year he is still known as the great american leader and as we celebrate his birthday we should remember all that Lincoln has done for America.

  27. Peter Piper says:

    Happy belated birthday, Abe! I certainly agree with this article especially after they honored Abraham Lincoln’s bicentenial birthday by creating a new Lincoln stamp.

  28. Dirtfarmer Vanilla-E says:

    Whether it be emancipating the slaves or gluing the country together with skillful speeches of reassurance, Honest Abe kicked some serious Confederate tush.
    He wasn’t afraid of cracking a few eggs (or a couple hundred thousand of them), and he sure as heck wasn’t going to back down when he promised the country he would pummel the Confederates without remorse; he was true to his word, and that’s probably why he is considered the best of the best.

  29. Nate Porteous says:

    People nowadays do not understand what great things Abraham Lincoln did for our country. He is a great representation of how a leader should be, while trying to create the relatively modern lifestyle that we experience today. That’s why, on his 200th birthday, I hope people come to their senses and realize that our country would not be nearly as successful as it is today without the help of “Honest Abe”.

  30. Jess C. says:

    Abraham Lincoln established himself as one of our country’s most memorable presidents due to his hard work over one hundred years ago. He had several goals, including the preservation of the Union which lead to an even greater accomplishment: the end of slavery. His goals were set for the benefit of the people and he worked with the people in mind. Lincoln deserves the honor and attention for his 200th birthday due to his great accomplishments many years ago. For without these accomplishments, our country may have been in a very different state from what it is today.

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