Mary Todd Lincoln

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Mary Todd Lincoln

Mary Ann Todd Lincoln, wife of the sixteenth President of the United States, was born December 13, 1818, in Lexington, Kentucky to Robert and Eliza Parker Todd. She was raised in a wealthy, yet dysfunctional family. She was well educated as a child, but needed more attention while growing up.Mary had a lot of problems as a Southern woman during the Civil War. Many people disliked her and people often criticized her actions while she was in the White House. Her problems began early in her life. She had five brothers and sisters and was not given all of the attention she needed. This was difficult because she had a short temper and demanded a lot of attention. When Mary was four her baby brother died. She didn?t know what exactly happened, but she still showed that she was hurt by his death. Two years later when Mary was six years old her mother died. Eliza Parker Todd was only 31 years old when she died and she left her husband Robert with six children to look after. Eliza's death was extremely hard for Mary because she was just starting to get close to her mom. After just a year, her dad married Betsy Humphreys. Robert and Betsy were married on November 1, 1826. Betsy had eight children, giving them a total of 14 children to care for. This many children made it hard for Robert and Betsy to properly care for their children. Eliza's children were not fond of Betsy and she did not care much for them either. Those children watched out for each other and Elizabeth, Mary's oldest sister, took on her mother?s role. Mary started to become more independent just like her older sisters.Soon the Todd family moved into a new home in Lexington, which was yet another difficult change for Mary.

Mary found an escape from the family problems in 1836. She was 18, and had completed boarding school and was now leaving home. Her two sisters, Elizabeth and Frances, had already moved to Springfield, Illinois. Mary visited her sisters often and in 1839 moved to Springfield to live with Frances and her husband, William Wallace (Baker 79).After spending some time in Springfield, Mary started to look for a husband. It's been said that "social affairs became critical episodes for women in their twenties, who soon must marry or be old maids" (82). The fear of being an old maid caused h...

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...rried.Mary Todd Lincoln had an extremely difficult life. The challenges she faced from growing up in a dysfunctional Southern family affected many areas of her life. Marrying Abraham Lincoln made problems for her as well as the demands placed on both of them when he became President. ?As a Southern woman in the White House during the Civil War Mary was disliked by many and often criticized? (Turner 78).


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