The modern era has produced a number of great speeches that have withstood the test of time. Amongst them are Winston Churchill’s “Fight on the Beaches” (June 1940), John F. Kennedy’s “Ich bin ein Berliner”(June 1963) and Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” (August 1963), but the speech that may have had the biggest impact in the history of political thought was Abe Lincoln’s “Gettysburg Address” (November 1860). [Read more…] about Sigmund Freud, Adirondack High Peaks and American Colitis
Anyone with any doubts about Quinlan’s leanings on the subjects of slavery, the abolitionists, and Abraham Lincoln need only peruse the pages of the Republican Watchman newspaper during the years leading up to the Civil War and during the war itself, to be convinced. [Read more…] about A Catskills Copperhead Strikes Against Lincoln & Abolition
In his Thanksgiving Day proclamation, the Tammany Hall Democrat urged New Yorkers to spend time on that day to declare “their gratitude to God for all his mercies” and to “remember especially the poor.” [Read more…] about Turkey Day History: The Two Thanksgivings of 1871
April 14th marked the anniversary of Abraham Lincoln‘s assassination by John Wilkes Booth in 1865. This tragic event, like the later assassination of John F. Kennedy, had a tremendous impact on the nation.
There was a period of twenty days of mourning from the time Lincoln was shot to the time he arrived by train for burial at his home in Springfield, Illinois. The first of his twelve funerals was held in Washington, then his funeral procession began by train across the land to Illinois, stopping at major cities for additional funerals. It was the mightiest outpouring of national grief the world had yet seen. [Read more…] about Clifton Park’s Ties to Lincoln’s Assassination
The New York State Library has recently acquired the complete works of Lincoln scholar and Archives Partnership Trust Board Member Harold Holzer. The collection covers his 49-year career as a writer, lecturer, and historian specializing in Abraham Lincoln and Civil War era. [Read more…] about NYS Library Acquires Lincoln Scholar Harold Holzer’s Papers
That was not always the case.
And it wasn’t just those living below the Mason-Dixon Line who reviled our sixteenth president while he was in office. There was a strong anti-Lincoln sentiment in parts of the North, too, including here in Sullivan County, where a number of notable Monticello men were known to be pro-slavery Southern sympathizers, or Copperheads, as they became known.
James Eldridge Quinlan, editor of one of the county’s most prominent newspapers, The Republican Watchman, was one such man. Quinlan made no secret of his political leanings, and in fact his sentiments were so well known that at one point a group of men with opposite leanings threatened to blow up the Watchman office in order to eliminate Quinlan’s platform. [Read more…] about James Eldridge Quinlan: Catskills Publisher, Historian & Copperhead
Although there wasn’t much of a public reaction at the time of his death, Behrend is remembered today as the Narrowsburg, Sullivan County, NY farmer who challenged the President of the United States to uphold the ideals expressed in the Declaration of Independence. [Read more…] about Abraham Lincoln, Religious Freedom & A New York Farmer
This week on The Historians Podcast, longtime historian John Rhodehamel, author of America’s Original Sin: White Supremacy, John Wilkes Booth and the Lincoln Assassination (Johns Hopkins Univ. Press, 2021).
Rhodehamel argues that Booth’s primary motivation for his heinous crime was a growing commitment to white supremacy. In alternating chapters, Original Sin shows how, as Lincoln’s commitment to emancipation and racial equality grew, so too did Booth’s rage and hatred for Lincoln, whom he referred to as “King Abraham Africanus the First.” [Read more…] about White Supremacy and the Lincoln Assassination
Working against Weed was the fact that the Republican convention was to be held in Chicago, Illinois, home state of Abraham Lincoln. Weed knew that his man, Seward, was far better known throughout the country. In addition to being New York’s Governor, Seward had been a U.S. Senator and as a leading anti-slavery proponent he had received extensive publicity. His biggest drawback was that he had been considered at one time to be the most radical anti-slavery member of the Senate. [Read more…] about Albany’s Thurlow Weed: Seward, Lincoln’s Election, & The Civil War Years
Following his political successes in the disputed Election of 1824, Thurlow Weed was elected to the New York State Assembly in 1825 and again in 1830.
In the 1820s, like many in Upstate New York with populist, anti-elite feelings, Weed strongly believed the Masons were trying to control government using secret means. He felt that political affairs should be conducted publicly and particularly opposed the fraternal secrecy of Freemasonry. An alleged conspiracy by Masons to murder William Morgan in Western New York in September, 1826 sparked the anti-Freemasonry movement. Weed began publishing the Anti-Masonic Enquirer in Rochester, NY in February, 1828.
Soon Weed was hired as editor of the newly formed Anti-Masonic Albany Evening Journal, which began publication on March 22, 1830. The move to Albany made him a statewide leader of the fledgling Anti-Masonic Party. [Read more…] about The End of the Whigs: Thurlow Weed & The Birth of the Republican Party