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Think Anew, Act Anew: Abraham Lincoln on Slavery, Freedom, and Union

ISBN: 978-0-88295-975-7
205 pages
February 1998, ©1998, Wiley-Blackwell
Think Anew, Act Anew: Abraham Lincoln on Slavery, Freedom, and Union (0882959751) cover image

In the hope of shedding light on questions that continue to spark debate among historians and students of Lincoln, Brooks Simpson presents Think Anew, Act Anew, a concise and inventively annotated collection of documents written by Abraham Lincoln that focus on the interrelated themes of slavery, union, emancipation, and reconstruction. How did Lincoln define equality? How did he harmonize his rejection of slavery as immoral with his toleration of it where it existed? What were his views on race, and did they change over time? What did freedom mean to him?

This unique selection of Lincoln's own words offers readers a chance to explore for themselves how Lincoln understood the prevailing concerns of his America. Professor Simpson provides contextual information in introductions to each of the book's eight chapters and all sixty-four documents are preceded by a brief note.

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Acknowledgments xi

Principal Dates in the Life of Abraham Lincoln xii

Introduction 1

Chapter One the Monstrous Injustice, 1854-1857 7

1.1 Fragment on Slavery (c. 1854-1859) 9

1.2 Speech at Peoria, Illinois, October 16, 1854 (excerpts) 10

1.3 To George Robertson, August 15, 1855 20

1.4 To Joshua F. Speed, August 24, 1855 21

1.5 Speech at Springfield, Illinois, June 26, 1857 (excerpts) 25

Chapter Two The Debate with Douglas, 1858 28

2.1 Speech at Springfield, Illinois, June 16 1858 (The “House Divided” Speech) 30

2.2 Speech at Springfield, Illinois, July 17, 1858 (excerpts) 37

2.3 Speech at Freeport, Illinois, August 27, 1858 (Second Lincoln Douglas Debate; excerpt) 38

2.4 Speech at Edwardsville, Illinois, September 11, 1858 (excerpts) 42

2.5 Speech at Charleston, Illinois, September 18, 1858 (Fourth Lincoln-Douglas Debate; excerpt) 44

2.6 To James N. Brown, October 18, 1858 46

Chapter Three Stand By Our Principles, 1859-1860 48

3.1 Speech at Chicago, Illinois, March 1, 1859 (excerpt) 49

3.2 Speech at Cincinnati, Ohio, September 17, 1859 (excerpts) 52

3.3 Address at Cooper Institute, New York City, February 27, 1860 56

Chapter Four Preserving the Union, 1860-1862 73

4.1 To William Kellogg, December 11, 1860 76

4.2 To John A./ Gilmer, December 15, 1860 76

4.3 To Thurlow Weed, December 17, 1860 78

4.4 To Alexander H. Stephens, December 22, 1860 78

4.5 To James T. Hale, January 11, 1861 79

4.6 First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1861 80

4.7 Message to Congress, July 4, 1861 88

4.8 To Orville H. Browning, September 22, 1861 101

4.9 First Annual Message, December 3, 1861 (excerpt) 103

4.10 Message to Congress, March 6, 1862 105

4.11 Proclamation Revoking David Hunter’s Emancipation Order, May 19, 1862 106

Chapter Five The Winding Road to Emancipation, 1862-1863 109

5.1 Remarks to Border State Representatives, July 12, 1862 113

5.2 Draft of Emancipation Proclamation, July 22, 1862 115

5.3 To Reverdy Johnson, July 26, 1862 116

5.4 To Cuthbert Bullitt, July 28, 1862 117

5.5 To August Belmont, July 31, 1862 119

5.6 Remarks on Colonization to Black Ministers, August 14, 1862 120

5.7 To Horace Greeley, August 22, 1862 125

5.8 Reply to Chicago emancipation Memorial September 13, 1862 (excerpts) 126

5.9 Preliminary emancipation Proclamation, September 22, 1862 129

5.10 To Benjamin F. Butler, et al., October 14, 1862 131

5.11 Second Annual Message, December 1, 1862 (excerpts) 132

5.12 Emancipation Proclamation, January 1, 1863 142

5.13 To John A. McClernand, January 8, 1863 144

Chapter Six A New birth of Freedom, 1863 146

6.1 To Andrew Johnson, March 26, 1863 148

6.2 Order of Retaliation, July 30, 1863 149

6.3 To Nathaniel P. Banks, August 5, 1863 149

6.4 To James C. Conkling, August 26, 1863 151

6.5 To Salmon P. Chase, September 2, 1863 155

6.6 To Andrew Johnson, September 11, 1863 156

6.7 To Nathaniel P. Banks, November 5, 1863 157

6.8 Gettysburg Address, November 19, 1863 158

Chapter Seven Revolution, Reconstruction, and Reelection, 1863-1864 159

7.1 Proclamation of Amnesty and Reconstruction, December 8, 1863 161

7.2 Third Annual Message, December 8, 1863 (excerpt) 164

7.3 To Alpheus Lewis, January 23, 1864 168

7.4 To Michael Hahn, March 13, 1864 169

7.5 To Albert G. Hodges, April 4, 1864 170

7.6 Address at Baltimore, Maryland, April 18, 1864 172

7.7 Proclamation Concerning Reconstruction, July 8, 1864 175

7.8 To Charles D. Robinson, August 17, 1864 176

7.9 Draft of Letter to Isaac M. Schermerhorn, September 12, 1864 179

7.10 To Henry W. Hoffman, October 10, 1864 180

7.11 Response to Serenade, November 10, 1864 181

Chapter Eight With Malice Toward None, 1864-1865 183

8.1 Fourth Annual Message, December 6, 1864 (excerpts) 185

8.2 Response to Serenade, February 1, 1865 189

8.3 Proposed Message to Congress, February 5, 1865 190

8.4 Second Inaugural Address, March 4, 1865 192

8.5 Speech to the 140th Indiana Regiment, March 17 1865 193

8.6 To John A. Campbell, April 5, 1865 195

8.7 Speech on Reconstruction, April 11 1865 196

Selected Bibliography 201

Index 203

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Brooks D. Simpson is the author of several books on the Civil War and Reconstruction era, including Let Us Have Peace: Ulysses S. Grant and the Politics of war and Reconstruction, 1861-1868 (1991), The Political Education of Henry Adams (1996), and America’s Civil War (1996). He is a professor of history and humanities at Arizona State University.
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