|16th President to the United States|
March 4, 1861 – March 4, 1865
|Vice President||Hannibal Hamlin (1861–1865)|
|Preceded by||James Buchanan|
|Succeeded by||Salmon P. Chase|
|Member of the US House of Representatives from Illinois's 7th district|
March 4, 1847 – March 4, 1849
|Preceded by||John Henry|
|Succeeded by||Thomas Harris|
|Member of the Illinois House of Representatives|
December 1, 1834 – 1842
|Born||February 12, 1809
Hodgenville, Kentucky, U.S.
|Died||June 24, 1883 (aged 74)
Peoria, Illinois, U.S.
|Political party||Whig (1834–1854)
Abraham Lincoln was born on February 12, 1809, in Hodgenville, Kentucky. He would go on to move to Illinois, and served as a captain in the Black Hawk War. He served as the postmaster for New Salem, Illinois when he returned. He taught himself law by books and in 1834 he was elected to the state legislature. In 1836 he was admitted to the bar, and he became a lawyer. Lincoln then served four terms in the Illinois House of Representatives as a Whig. He was in favor of freeing slaves, though he did not like the practicality of how abolitionists believed slaves should be free, and believed that slaves should be able to resettle in Liberia.
In 1846, Lincoln was elected to the US House of Representatives from Illinois. He helped write a bill abolishing slavery in the District of Columbia. He opposed the Mexican-American War. However, he vowed only to serve one term as Representative, so he returned to being a lawyer.
Lincoln returned to politics to oppose the Kansas-Nebraska Act. In 1854, he ran for Senate as a Whig, but lost because of the declining support for Whigs. He then became a Republican, and came in second in the Vice Presidential ballot for the 1856 election. he feuded with Stephen Douglas about slavery, with their campaign for Senate against each other featuring seven debates. Lincoln lost in the 1858 election, though.
In 1860, Lincoln created a campaign team and was first endorsed for President at the Republican State Convention of Illinois. At the Republican Convention in Chicago, Lincoln won the nomiation over William Seward and Salmon P. Chase. Hannibal Hamlin was chosen as his Vice President.
On November 6, 1860, Lincoln was elected as the 16th President, completely from Northern states (as well as Oregon and California). After his election, South Carolina seceded, and other states followed. These states called themselves the Confederate States of America, claiming to be an independent nation, and made a Constitution, naming Jefferson Davis as the first President. Lincoln refused to recognize the Confederacy, saying that it was illegal. He took office on March 4, 1861, and claimed in the inauguration speech that he had no intention to free the slaves in the South.
The Battle of Ft. Sumter occurred, and Lincoln began to plan for the war ahead, and suspended habeas corpus. He continued to try to do everything in his power to win the war, and prepared the Emancipation Proclamation to free slaves in the South, be he needed the confidence from his military in order to do this. However, after the Confederacy won the Battle of Antietam, there was no turning point in favor of the North. Instead, Britain, Spain, and later France recognized the Confederacy as an independent country.
When the Charleston Cotton Party occurred, Lincoln was surprised that Britain joined the war, and expected them to send troops to help the South. Instead, he received news in June 1863 that Albany had been captured and damaged by British Canadian soldiers. In December 1863, Lincoln asked to meet with the leader of British North America, John Macdonald. Lincoln asked for Britain to return Albany and not invade the Union further. Macdonald said that he would only agree to do this if he would recognize the Confederacy and make peace. Lincoln said that he'd consider it, and returned to Washington.
At first, Lincoln did not want to sign a peace treaty, but then he received news that the Confederate troops were en route to Washington. In February, he asks for a cease fire with Britain and the Confederacy while he, Macdonald, and Jefferson Davis go to Trenton. He debated with the two over many issues, but eventually agreed to sign the Treaty of Trenton in May 1864. The war was over, and in April he announced that he would not run for a second term, as he knew that he would be blamed for the North's losses. He tried to help recover the North in his remaining time as President, and officially left office in March 1865.
Lincoln returned to Illinois to become a lawyer. He was very successful, and redevloped a positive reputation. Though he did let the South secede, it was the military that could not defeat the South. He lived in Peoria, and taught many law students. He retired in 1879, and died in 1883.