April 14, 1865•Unfortunately for Lincoln, and perhaps the nation, he was not around to carry out his plans for Reconstruction.
April 14, 1865• John Wilkes Booth, one of the great actors of his time, conspired with a number of others to kidnap President Lincoln, believing that they could exchange him for Confederate prisoners of war, and maybe even the end of the war itself.
April 14, 1865• Booth, however, was unsuccessful with this plan before General Lee had surrendered and so devised another plot, this time to assassinate the President, the Vice-President, Secretary of State, Secretary of War, General Grant, and others.
April 14, 1865•On the night of April 14, 1865, President Lincoln and his wife decided to make a trip to Ford’s Theater to see the English play Our American Cousin.
April 14, 1865•When John Wilkes Booth found out that Lincoln would be at the play that night, he got word to his co-conspirators and put his plot into motion.
April 14, 1865• Being quite familiar with the play and the theater, Booth was able to enter the President’s private box at the theater at the precise moment when the audience screamed with laughter and shot President Lincoln below the left ear.
escape•The only thing left for Booth now was to get out of the President’s box as quickly as possible.
escape• His only option was to jump from the box to the stage below, which was made more difficult because he got his riding spur caught in the flags that fronted the box.
escape• He landed awkwardly on the stage and broke his ankle, which would slow down his escape considerably.
escape• After shooting Lincoln and leaping on to the stage, he uttered the state motto of Virginia, “Sic semper tyrannis” (“Thus always to tyrants”) and left the stage saying “The South is avenged.”
escape• For almost two weeks, Booth evaded pursuers as he tried to get deeper and deeper into the South, where people who sympathized with him would certainly hide and protect him.
escape• Slowed by his ankle, Booth was killed on April 26, 1865 trying to escape the barn that he was hiding in after Union troops set fire to it.
escape• The course of Reconstruction had forever been changed and Booth’s actions may have served to hurt his beloved South more than had he not shot Lincoln.
tribute• In 1942, as part of the effort to keep up patriotism during World War II, Aaron Copland was asked to compose a work about an “eminent (important) American.”
tribute•His piece, called Lincoln Portrait, used quotes from Lincoln’s speeches as well as a full orchestra to portray what he thought of Lincoln.
tribute•The first piece that you are going to hear is called “Fanfare for the Common Man,” another Aaron Copland piece.
“Fellow citizens, wecannot escape history." That is what he said. That is what Abraham Lincoln said.
"Fellow citizens, we cannot escape history.We of this congress and this administrationwill be remembered in spite of ourselves. No personal significance or insignificance can spare one or another of us. The fiery trialthrough which we pass will light us down in honor or dishonor to the latest generation.We, even we here, hold the power and bear the responsibility." [Annual Message to Congress, December 1, 1862]
He was born in Kentucky, raised in Indiana, and lived in Illinois. And this is what he said. This is what Abe Lincoln said.
"The dogmas of the quiet past areinadequate to the stormy present. The occasion is piled high with difficultyand we must rise with the occasion. As our case is new, so we must think anew and act anew. We must disenthrall ourselves and then we willsave our country." [Annual Message to Congress, December 1, 1862]
When standing erect he was sixfeet four inches tall, and this is what he said.
He said: "It is the eternal struggle betweentwo principles, right and wrong, throughoutthe world. It is the same spirit that says youtoil and work and earn bread, and Ill eat it.No matter in what shape it comes, whether from the mouth of a king who seeks to bestride the people of his own nation, and live by the fruit of their labor, or from one race of men as an apology for enslaving another race, it is the same tyrannical principle." [Lincoln-Douglas debates, 15 October 1858]
Lincoln was a quiet man. Abe Lincoln was a quiet and a melancholy man. But when hespoke of democracy, this is what he said.
He said: "As I would not be aslave, so I would not be a master. This expresses my idea ofdemocracy. Whatever differs from this, to the extent of the difference, is no democracy."
Abraham Lincoln, sixteenthpresident of these United States, is everlasting in the memory of his countrymen. For on thebattleground at Gettysburg, this is what he said:
He said: "That from these honored dead we take increased devotion tothat cause for which they gave the lastfull measure of devotion. That we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain. That this nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom and that government of the people, by the people, and for the people shall not perish from the earth."