By John C. Waugh

How did Abraham Lincoln, lengthy held as a paragon of presidential bravery and principled politics, locate his approach to the White residence? How did he develop into this one guy nice enough to probability the destiny of the country at the well-worn yet cast-off inspiration that each one males are created equal?

Here award-winning historian John C. Waugh takes us on Lincoln’s highway to the Civil struggle. From Lincoln's first public rejection of slavery to his mystery arrival within the capital, from his attractive debates with Stephen Douglas to his contemplative moments contemplating the nation of the rustic he enjoyed, Waugh exhibits us the United States as Lincoln observed it and as Lincoln defined it. a lot of this glorious tale is advised by way of Lincoln himself, detailing via his personal writing his emergence onto the political scene and the evolution of his ideals in regards to the Union, the structure, democracy, slavery, and civil battle. Waugh brings Lincoln’s course into new reliefby letting the good guy inform his personal tale, at a intensity that brings us ever toward figuring out this mysterious, complex, really nice man.

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Extra resources for One Man Great Enough: Abraham Lincoln's Road to Civil War

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He borrowed books he hadn't read as a youth in Indiana, digesting them, pondering them, remembering them. He read poetry—Shakespeare, Byron, Burns—books of history, and two books that tended to make for religious skepticism in a basically God-fearing time: Thomas Paine's Age of Reason and Constantin de Volney's Ruins. 23 There was a fundamental intellectual refinement in that rough frontier town in the shape of a debating society. Lincoln joined it, and his fellow debaters noted that how he performed didn't square at all with what he looked like or what they had come to expect.

He would go as a Whig leader in the House and the leader of this elongated heavyweight delegation. "7 Because Sangamon County was seized by the internal improvements mania, maybe more passionately than most, there was a clear mandate to ram through an internal-improvements package. Lincoln would happily follow the people's mandate for this, as he strongly believed in it. 8 It might happen. Lincoln was to be a member of the internal-improvements committee in the House. But there was yet one other passion burning in the bosoms of Lincoln and the Long Nine, burning with a heat more intense even than internal improvements.

Lincoln had stated his mind, for the first time, on the issue that would dominate the rest of his political life—and the state's and the nation's. PART THREE The Issue's Dark Side 6. Death in Alton POLITICS, PARTIES, AND POSITIONS in the young Union were reasonably clear-cut in 1837. The Whigs, newly-emerging in the political world, had become one of the two major parties—in the Union and in Illinois. They were the champions of rapid economic development driven by an active, centrally controlled government.

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