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Excerpt from Abraham Lincoln
It will be one of my purposes in this paper to show, by a sketch of Lincoln's ancestry, early life and subsequent career, how truly he stands alone, of all men who have been the product of this new Western Civilization.
Even those of us who were living at the time of his active public life, and who have since read and studied what others have written and said of him, pause with almost breathless wonder each time we are led through those avenues of a study of his life,, to some new view of his many-sided greatness. The farther we get, on the plane of national existence, away from the rugged and mountainous turmoil of the period of 1860 to 1865, the smaller and more indistinct appear all the lesser notable figures, and the higher and more sublime in its solitary grandeur towers up the character of Abraham Lincoln. We may well ask, therefore, from whence came this man, who more than any other man of the past century, more than perhaps any man of many other centuries, embodies all that is best in the hopes and aspirations of mankind in their struggle for something better.
From the first knowledge to be had of his ancestry, we learn that the earliest known ancestor of Abraham Lincoln was Samuel Lincoln, who emigrated from the west of England and settled at Hingham, Mass., a few years after the landing of the Pilgrims. Stated by occupations in his ancestry, we find that it includes a weaver, two blacksmiths, a farmer and a carpenter.
The grandfather, who was Abraham I, was killed by the Indians in Kentucky in 1784; his son, Thomas, father of Abraham, who was with his father at the time, was rescued from death by the well directed rifle shot of an elder brother. Lincoln's father is described as easy-going, slow to anger, but formidable when aroused, as he was physically a powerful man. As to worldly possessions, being of an uneasy and roving disposition, he exemplified the usual fate of a rolling stone. Not less than eight moves of his are recorded from the birth of his son Abraham, until the boy reached the age of twenty-one. After Abraham was earning money of his own, he bought his father a farm of forty acres, where he lived until he died, frequently helped by gifts of money and provisions by his then rising son.
On June 10, 1806, Thomas Lincoln was married to his cousin, Nancy Hanks, a niece of his employer for whom he worked as a carpenter, and of whom he learned his trade.
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