On This Day

Abraham Lincoln

16th US President Abraham Lincoln

Profession: 16th US President

United States of America

Political Party: Republican Republican Party
Political Titles: Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Illinois's 7th district, Member of the Illinois House of Representatives

Presidential Term: March 4, 1861 - April 15, 1865
Preceded By: James Buchanan
Succeeded By: Andrew Johnson

Biography: Regularly regarded as one of the great American presidents, Abraham Lincoln became president in 1861, amid a crisis over slavery in the Union. Shortly after his election, seven Southern states seceded and formed the Confederate States, beginning the American Civil War.

An incredibly astute politician, Lincoln outmaneuvered several political enemies in his time. His oratory and writing appealed to the American people, particularly his Gettysburg Address, which became an iconic endorsement of democracy and republicanism.

As the war came to an end Lincoln made several moves to abolish slavery. In 1863 he issued the Emancipation Proclamation which made more than 3 million slaves free. In early 1865 he pushed Congress to pass the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution which permanently ended slavery. Shortly before the end of the conflict, John Wilkes Booth assassinated Lincoln as he watched a play at Ford's Theater in Washington, D.C.

Lincoln's actions preserved the Union and pulled the United States through its greatest political, military and moral crisis.

Born: February 12, 1809
Birthplace: Hodgenville, Kentucky, USA
Star Sign: Aquarius

Died: April 15, 1865 (aged 56)
Cause of Death: Assassination

Articles and Photos

Married Life

  • 1842-11-04 American socialite Mary Todd (23) weds Illinois Congressman and lawyer Abraham Lincoln (33) in Springfield, Illinois

Historical Events

  • 1849-03-10 Abraham Lincoln applies for a patent (only US President to do so) for a device to lift a boat over shoals and obstructions
  • 1849-05-22 Abraham Lincoln receives a patent (only US President to do so) for a device to lift a boat over shoals and obstructions
  • 1854-10-04 Abraham Lincoln makes his 1st political speech at Illinois State Fair
  • 1858-06-16 Abraham Lincoln says "A house divided against itself cannot stand" accepting Illinois Republican Party's nomination for the Senate
  • 1858-09-08 Abraham Lincoln supposedly says in a speech "You may fool all the people some of the time; you can even fool some of the people all the time; but you can’t fool all of the people all the time"
  • 1860-02-27 Abraham Lincoln makes a speech at Cooper Union in the city of New York that is largely responsible for his election to the Presidency
  • 1860-05-16 -18] Chicago: Republican convention selects Abraham Lincoln as candidate
  • 1860-05-18 US Republican Party nominates Abraham Lincoln for president
  • 1860-10-15 11-year-old Grace Bedell writes to Abraham Lincoln telling him to grow a beard
  • 1860-11-06 Republican Abraham Lincoln of Illinois elected the 16th President of the United States of America
  • 1861-02-11 US President-elect Abraham Lincoln takes train from Spingfield IL to Washington, D.C.
  • 1861-02-13 Abraham Lincoln declared US President in Washington, D.C.
  • 1861-02-16 Abraham Lincoln stops his train at Westfield on his way to Washington to thank 11-year old Grace Bedell in person for her advice to grow a beard to gain more votes
  • 1861-03-04 Abraham Lincoln is inaugurated as the 16th US President
  • 1861-03-04 US President Abraham Lincoln opens Government Printing Office
  • 1861-04-15 Federal army (75,000 volunteers) mobilized by US President Abraham Lincoln (US Civil War)
  • 1861-04-16 US President Abraham Lincoln outlaws business with Confederate States (US Civil War)
  • 1861-04-27 US President Abraham Lincoln suspends writ of habeas corpus (US Civil War)
  • 1861-04-30 US President Abraham Lincoln orders Federal Troops to evacuate Indian Territory (US Civil War)
  • 1861-08-15 Abraham Lincoln orders reinforcements be sent to Missouri
  • 1861-08-16 US President Abraham Lincoln prohibits Union states from trading with Confederacy
  • 1861-12-30 Associated Banks in NYC halt gold payments to government and investors, to disrupt Abraham Lincoln's US bank reform program
  • 1862-02-01 Ralph Waldo Emerson and Charles Sumner meet with President Abraham Lincoln at The White House, Washington
  • 1862-02-25 First Legal Tender Act 1862 is passed by the US Congress, authorizing the United States Note (greenback) into circulation, the first fiat paper money that was legal tender in America
  • 1862-03-11 Abraham Lincoln removes George McClellan as General-in-Chief of the US Army
  • 1862-05-20 US President Abraham Lincoln signs into law the Homestead Act to provide cheap land for the settlement of the American West (80 million acres by 1900)
  • 1862-07-08 US Morrill Anti-Bigamy Act signed by Abraham Lincoln (not enforced)
  • 1862-08-14 Abraham Lincoln receives the first group of African Americans to confer with a US president
  • 1862-09-22 US President Abraham Lincoln issues preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, threatening to free all enslaved people in the rebel southern states if those states fail to re-join the Union by January 1, 1863
  • 1862-12-06 US President Abraham Lincoln orders hanging of 39 Santee Sioux Indians
  • 1862-12-31 President Abraham Lincoln signs act admitting West Virginia to the Union
  • 1863-01-01 Emancipation Proclamation issued by Abraham Lincoln to free slaves in US confederate states
  • 1863-02-26 Abraham Lincoln signs National Currency Act, establishes single national US currency
  • 1863-03-03 Abraham Lincoln approves charter for National Academy of Sciences
  • 1863-07-30 President Abraham Lincoln issues "eye-for-eye" order to shoot a rebel prisoner for every black prisoner shot
  • 1863-10-03 US President Abraham Lincoln designates last Thursday in November as Thanksgiving Day
  • 1863-11-17 Abraham Lincoln begins 1st draft of his Gettysburg Address
  • 1863-11-19 US President Abraham Lincoln delivers his Gettysburg address beginning; "Four score and seven years ago..."
  • 1863-12-08 Abraham Lincoln issues his Amnesty Proclamation and plan for Reconstruction of the South
  • 1864-06-07 Abraham Lincoln renominated for US President by the Republican Party
  • 1864-07-18 US President Abraham Lincoln asks for 500,000 volunteers for military service
  • 1864-11-08 Abraham Lincoln (R) elected to his 2nd term as American President
  • 1865-03-03 US Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, & Abandoned Lands established by Abraham Lincoln to help destitute free blacks
  • 1865-03-04 Abraham Lincoln inaugurated for his 2nd term as US President. The man who would assassinate him weeks later, John Wilkes Booth, is photographed attending the inauguration.
  • 1865-03-06 US President Abraham Lincoln's 2nd Inaugural Ball
  • 1865-04-11 Abraham Lincoln urges a spirit of generous conciliation during reconstruction
  • 1865-04-14 U.S. Secretary of State William H. Seward and his family are attacked in his home by Lewis Powell as part of the same conspiracy to assassinate Abraham Lincoln
  • 1865-04-14 US President Abraham Lincoln is shot in the head by John Wilkes Booth at Ford's Theater in Washington; he dies a day later
  • 1865-04-15 Abraham Lincoln dies nine hours after he is shot by John Wilkes Booth while attending the play "Our American Cousin" at Ford's Theatre in Washington
  • 1865-04-17 Mary Surratt is arrested as a conspirator in Abraham' Lincoln's assassination
  • 1865-04-21 Abraham Lincoln's funeral train leaves Washington
  • 1865-07-07 Mary Surratt, Lewis Powell, David Herold and George Atzerodt are executed for their role in the conspiracy to assassinate US President Abraham Lincoln
  • 1887-04-10 US President Abraham Lincoln's re-buried with his wife in Springfield, Illinois
  • 2015-09-24 Pope Francis becomes the 1st pope to address the US Congress. Names Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King Jr., Thomas Merton and Dorothy Day as his American heroes.

Quotes by Abraham Lincoln

  • "You have to do your own growing no matter how tall your grandfather was."

Biographies and Sources

Famous US Presidents