Lincoln 's First Inaugural Address Essay

Lincoln 's First Inaugural Address Essay

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One of Lincoln’s most famous quotes is “A House divided against itself cannot stand.” This describes his presidency well- focusing on maintaining the Union. In the beginning, Lincoln tried to stay out of sensitive affairs involving the North and South in an attempt to keep them together, promising the South little interference. Despite this, he played a key role in passing the Thirteenth Amendment, doing whatever it takes to end slavery for good and ending the Civil War.
Reading Lincoln’s first Inaugural Address, one wouldn’t think he would be the president to end slavery.Speaking on outlawing slavery, he says,“I believe I have no lawful right to do so, and I have no inclination to do so.” At the time, Lincoln wasn’t worried about slavery, he was worried about the country. He is doing whatever he can to prevent states’ secession, but knows he can only do so much, saying “In your hands, my dissatisfied fellow-countrymen, and not in mine, is the momentous issue of civil war.” Lincoln can promise to not interfere with slavery, the South, and the Constitution, but in the end the people must choose what happens in the war, and because of this, Lincoln must go back on his promises for the good of the country.
One of the main examples of Lincoln going back on his promises is the Emancipation Proclamation. Lincoln ordered that all slaves in seceded states should be freed, and made them soldiers by saying they “will be received into the armed service of the United States.” This was a momentous turn of events because while the South now had fewer laborers, weakening their effort, the North received more soldiers, making their numbers larger than ever.
Not all slaves were freed because of the Emancipation Proclamation. Lincoln gives a list o...


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...tate, he “had already determined to vote for the thirteenth amendment.” Having this success, Lincoln asked Rollins to find the “prospect of the border state vote.” If Lincoln could win over the border states, he would have his majority. As it turns out, the amendment did pass 119-56 with 8 suspiciously abstained votes, all from border states. With a vote this close, those eight votes could have made the amendment nothing more than a memory, but Lincoln made sure that things went his way.
Lincoln went against his promises. He took slaves from the South which was exactly what he said he wouldn’t do. He bribed and bought votes, corrupting the government. However, he broke his promises to save the country. He bought the votes to turn a new page in our history and free all slaves. No other president would have done that, and without him, there would be one less amendment.

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