The Abraham Lincoln you know nothing about

 Having been fortunate in college to have a History Prof who had a keen interest in Lincoln, I was given the opportunity to read many of the primary sources when we covered the Civil War. What always remained with me were the writings of Lincoln which stood out in sharp contrast to the generally accepted truth of what he was about. There has been a growing annoyance with me that he now has almost received deification what with O”Reilly’s new book and films. I was pleased to find a post today over at Front page mag.: The Truth about Abraham Lincoln & Slavery: Breaking through the mythology.

The final words from the post, see if it sounds familiar:

Why didn’t Lincoln feel the same about Southern secession? Following the money might help with an answer. Throughout most of our history, the only sources of federal revenue were excise taxes and tariffs. During the 1850s, tariffs amounted to 90 percent of federal revenue. Southern ports paid 75 percent of tariffs in 1859. What “responsible” politician would let that much revenue go?

The book  uses exact quotes from his writings. You decide what the civil war was all about. Thomas DiLorenzo, economics professor at Loyola University Maryland, exposed some of the Lincoln myth in his 2006 book, “Lincoln Unmasked.” Now comes Joseph Fallon, cultural intelligence analyst and former U.S. Army Intelligence Center instructor, with his new e-book, “Lincoln Uncensored.” Fallon’s book examines 10 volumes of collected writings and speeches of Lincoln’s, which include passages on slavery, secession, equality of blacks and emancipation. We don’t have to rely upon anyone’s interpretation. Just read his words to see what you make of them.:

In an 1858 letter, Lincoln said, “I have declared a thousand times, and now repeat that, in my opinion neither the General Government, nor any other power outside of the slave states, can constitutionally or rightfully interfere with slaves or slavery where it already exists.”

 “My declarations upon this subject of negro slavery may be misrepresented, but can not be misunderstood. I have said that I do not understand the Declaration (of Independence) to mean that all men were created equal in all respects.”

“I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of … making voters or jurors of Negroes nor of qualifying them to hold office nor to intermarry with white people; and I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races, which I believe will forever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality.”

“I view the matter (Emancipation Proclamation) as a practical war measure, to be decided upon according to the advantages or disadvantages it may offer to the suppression of the rebellion.” He also wrote: “I will also concede that emancipation would help us in Europe, and convince them that we are incited by something more than ambition.” At the time Lincoln wrote the proclamation, war was going badly for the Union.

The Emancipation Proclamation was not a universal declaration. It detailed where slaves were freed, only in those states “in rebellion against the United States.” Slaves remained slaves in states not in rebellion — such as Kentucky, Maryland and Delaware. The hypocrisy of the Emancipation Proclamation came in for heavy criticism. Lincoln’s own secretary of state, William Seward, said, “We show our sympathy with slavery by emancipating slaves where we cannot reach them and holding them in bondage where we can set them free.” Read more over at  Front page mag

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26 Responses to “The Abraham Lincoln you know nothing about”

  1. Citizen Tom Says:

    When I was growing up, I went to school in various places around the country. One thing I learned in Connecticut is that reading primary source literature is the best way to learn history. So I congratulate Bunkerville on this post. In addition, I learned in Mississippi schools that the causes for the Civil War were more complex than not.

    Just as deifying Lincoln makes little sense, neither does demonizing him. Lincoln seems to have been a good man, but he upheld the values of his era. Even those who detested slavery thought little of Blacks. Given the lengths Southerners (and some Northerners) went to keep Blacks uneducated and servile, in retrospect we should not be surprised most Whites once thought Blacks inferior. We should just remember we have the advantage of hindsight and constitutional amendments that ban slavery.

    Was the Civil War unavoidable. God only knows. What we do know is that slavery is a vile sin. That is why slavery fundamentally split the people of this nation.

    Before the Civil War, Alexis De Tocqueville provided remarkably insightful observations in his great work, Democracy in America. For pertinent excerpts, please check out this post.

    • bunkerville Says:

      Nothing is open and shut, but a balanced approach to what went down regarding the civil war and Lincoln as well. I agree. It was the primary source approach to history that excited me. We would debate each point of view and made it come to life.

    • bunkerville Says:

      I would add, that the post was not about slavery, but some reality about Lincoln.

  2. Teresa Rice Says:

    I always thought of President Lincoln as being against slavery but his writings show a whole other side to Lincoln. It seems that he was more about practicality and what was best for the union but not necessarily what was best for the slave. Thank you for posting this Bunkerville.

    • bunkerville Says:

      History is never always exactly as the textbooks reveal. Nothing like going to the original writings they authored.

  3. Steve Dennis Says:

    Lincoln always said his number one goal was keeping he union together and he admitted he didn’t care if that meant it would be all free, all slave, or partially free and partially slave, that always made me wonder what the true motive was. This sheds some interesting light on it.

    • bunkerville Says:

      I hope the book comes out in print as well. Follow the money as they say.

  4. LD Jackson Says:

    Very interesting writeup, Bunker, and one that challenges a lot of the perceptions many of us hold about President Lincoln. I went to college to be a history teacher, specifically American and Oklahoma history, and I had no knowledge of this “side” of Lincoln. You have given me much food for thought.

    • bunkerville Says:

      As in all things, nothing is black and white, but there are real questions whether the war had to happen. I majored in Anthro and minored in History, and my first love remains History.

  5. Ducky's here Says:

    Still fighting it, aren’t you.

    So called Southern culture is dead and well buried.
    The South offered nothing to the future of the nation except the disastrous
    plantation agriculture system which was an impediment to growth, especially
    the growth of small enterprises that you fringe right wingers tout so often.

    You should thank the North for helping to eliminate that dead end.

    • bunkerville Says:

      The plantation economy was well on the way to being uneconomical. With the development of the cotton gin, the south was well on its way to be economically independent. The civil war was never about slavery. Read a little.

  6. Always On Watch Says:

    Abraham Lincoln was a white supremacist.

    Google search “Lincoln racist,” and see for yourself.

    From this source (plenty of other sources will confirm):

    “I will say then that I am not, nor ever have been in favor of bringing about in anyway the social and political equality of the white and black races – that I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters or jurors of negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people; and I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe will forever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I as much as any other man am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race. I say upon this occasion I do not perceive that because the white man is to have the superior position the negro should be denied everything.”


    Abraham Lincoln
    (1809-1865) 16th US President

    Fourth Debate with Stephen A. Douglas at Charleston, Illinois, September 18, 1858
    (The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln edited by Roy P. Basler, Volume III, pp. 145-146.)

    • bunkerville Says:

      I appreciate your comment. Had I come right out and said it, the trolls would have put the tin foil out.

  7. Designs by Dianne Says:

    If acting prez today took Lincoln to heart & as the media depicts him, he’d resign and take his place as a school janitor (no disrespect to them, of course). Interesting write Bunker. Good for your Prof to teach the facts and truth! and you to appreciate it!

    • bunkerville Says:

      Obama claims that Lincoln is his hero, and used his bible. Estimates are that 620,000 americans died. Habeus Corpus was denied, what more could he want to emulate?

      • Designs by Dianne Says:

        What you’re saying is he “does not” make a good custodian: “…and that the custodian present proof of authority, allowing the court to determine whether the custodian has lawful authority to detain the prisoner. If the custodian is acting beyond his authority, then the prisoner must be released.” Humm.

  8. deborahbidwell Says:

    Most people will not and do not believe that the Civil war was not about slavery only and they dont know to open a book and educate themselves on who Lincoln and our country were back then.

    • bunkerville Says:

      Habeas corpus went out the window, but no one talks about it.

  9. mcnorman Says:

    Isn’t this the same type of revision that we have seen with Barack et al? Myths are more fun anyway.

    • bunkerville Says:

      Stranger than fiction isn’t it.

      • mcnorman Says:

        I have an old friend who owns a Civil War prisoner diary. Hollywood has yet to understand reality as it happened.

      • bunkerville Says:

        I read as well some of these same sources. A part of history that we dont want to deal with.

  10. gpcox Says:

    Our school systems make heros out of whomever they want to. Kids years ago had to just accept it, nowadays – they can look it up and see what really happened.

    • bunkerville Says:

      If they take the trouble. I was fortunate. A so called problems approach was used to teach our history courses. Western Civ was especially exciting reading the writings from the times.

  11. Asylum Watch Says:

    History is writen by the victors and so must always be taken with a grain of salt. Can’t grow government without money.

    • bunkerville Says:

      Well said. Truth sometimes can be a painful, better to have a more pleasant reality.

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