Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War | Free Essay Example

Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War

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Topic: History
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Among outstanding political figures, Abraham Lincoln holds a specific place. He was the president of the USA in a very difficult period for the country. The Civil War, which lasted four years, claimed the lives of more than 600 thousand of the Americans. Abraham Lincoln has placed himself on record as a person who has prevented the collapse of the USA and who has liberated slaves. He is rightly considered as a successor of the Founding Father of the USA and the adherent of the American democracy.

There is few information about the childhood of Lincoln. He was born in 12 February 1809 in a family of a poor farmer. Since early childhood, he used to work hard. In the age of seven, his family moved to Indiana. In the XIX century, there were many dangers for American farmers. The constant epidemics, conflicts with the Indians and the depletion of soil resources made them move from place to place. These were the reasons that prevented Lincoln from receiving a good education. Basically, he was self-taught person (“Abraham Lincoln” par.1). During his life, he occupied many professions. He studied law aiming to obtain a barrister’s license.

His first steps in politics he made in 1834 when he was elected for Illinois State Assembly. Two years later, he passed the exam and was called to the bar. Working as a lawyer, he became very popular among the citizens of Illinois. In 1847, Lincoln was elected to the House of Representatives. Later on in 1854 after a chapter of accidents on the arena of politics, he joined the Republican Party. The end of 1950s was the turning point in his life. On the nominating convention in Chicago, he was stated for the Presidency. During the election campaign, Lincoln succeeded to avoid hard question concerning the abolition of slavery and in 1860, he became the president of the USA.

The election of the representative of the Republican Party was the reason for a separation of eight slave-owning states of the South, which proclaimed the formation of the new independent state (“Civil War” par.4). In 1861 they elected for presidency of the Confederate States of America Jefferson Finis Davis.

The situation was very difficult for Lincoln. He had no any experience in administration of the state; moreover, the government was not organized. Lincoln was eager to persuade the slaveholders not to secede from the Union. Meanwhile the circumstances demanded decisive actions. The representatives of the CSA attacked and captured Fort Sumter. In two days, Lincoln appeal all loyal citizens to defend the country. There were more than 75 thousand of volunteers who entered the army. In such a way, the Civil War began.

From the very beginning, there was the prevailing opinion that the Federals would easily conquer the slaveholders. The northern states occupied larger territory; they had more resources and more powerful industry. Nevertheless, the Federals were not ready for the war. Many army officers at the beginning of the war had defected to the enemy. The initial phase of the war was unsuccessful for the Federals (Mcpherson par.4).

However, due to a succession of the reforms and the effective work of the government the Northern states succeeded to turn the war around. Two laws adopted by Lincoln were decisive for the victory and for the further development of the country. Everyone who wanted to receive land in his disposal had an opportunity to buy it for a token payment. In such a way, Lincoln attracted volunteers to the army of the Federals. Moreover, in 1863 Emancipation Proclamation was issued. In such a way, the Civil War against the Confederation was also associated with the war against slavery. Lincoln was deadly wounded in 1865 by John Wilkes Booth, who was the passionate proponent of the Confederation.

Works Cited

Abraham Lincoln 2015. Web.

Civil War 2015. Web.

Mcpherson, James, A Brief Overview of the American Civil War, n.d. Web.