Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Remembering Lincoln

Ford's Theater 1865
On April 14, 1865, while attending the play Our American Cousin, at Ford's Theatre President Abraham Lincoln was shot.  The Ford's Theater Society commemorated Lincoln's legacy with an all night vigil from the 14th through today April 15th, with  a moment of silence at 7:22am the moment Lincoln was pronounced dead.  The assasination occured five days after the commander of the Army of Northern Virginia, Gen. Robert E. Lee, surrendered to Lt. Gen Ulysses S. Grant and the Army of the Potomac at Appomatox Court House.

Scene of Lincoln's Funeral Procession.

Our reliance is in the love of liberty which God has planted in our bosoms.  Our defense is in the preservation of the spirit which prizes liberty as the heritage of all men, in all lands, everywhere."
- Lincoln September 11, 1858

Lincoln's most noted speech is the Gettysburg Address, but his presidency is marked by many historic moments including signing the Emancipation Proclamation.  His death deeply affected many Americans including the African American community, as he played a very important role in ending slavery in the United States.  Just days after his death thousands of people could be seen waiting to pay their respects at his funeral.  A New York World coorespondent wrote that the occasion was strange because it was a very significant parade but it was also very sad.  The soldiers of the 22nd United States Colored Troops, a regiment from Pennsylvania, led Lincoln's funeral procession to the train that would take his body to Springfield, Illinois were he was buried.

The nation at large was in mourning, responses can be seen in communities around the country to Lincoln's death.  The Ford's Theater Society has established a digital archive of responses to Lincoln's death, The African American Civil War Museum will post some responses to Lincoln's death, from the African American community on our Facebook page throughout the day on today April 15th.

-Briana Welch, Eastern Senior High School

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