Let every American, every lover of liberty, every well wisher to his posterity, swear by the blood of the Revolution, never to violate in the least particular, the laws of the country; and never to tolerate their violation by others.

As the patriots of seventy-six did to the support of the Declaration of Independence, so to the support of the Constitution and Laws, let every American pledge his life, his property, and his sacred honor; let every man remember that to violate the law, is to trample on the blood of his father, and to tear the charter of his own, and his children's liberty.

Let reverence for the laws, be breathed by every American mother, to the lisping babe, that prattles on her lap; let it be taught in schools, in seminaries, and in colleges; let it be written in Primers, spelling books, and in Almanacs; let it be preached from the pulpit, proclaimed in legislative halls, and enforced in courts of justice. And, in short, let it become the political religion of the nation; and Let the old and the young, the rich and the poor, the grave and the gay, of all sexes and tongues, and colors and conditions, sacrifice unceasingly upon its altars.

While ever a state of feeling, such as this, shall universally, or even, very generally prevail throughout the nation, vain will be every effort, and fruitless every attempt, to subvert our national freedom.

- Abraham Lincoln, January 27, 1838
  Address Before the Young Men's Lyceum of Springfield, Illinois

Friday, February 06, 2009

Looking back at Lincoln: On February 6, 1861

On this day in 1861, Mary Todd Lincoln held a reception at the Lincoln home in Springfield, Illinois in preparation for the family's departure for Washington. She was assisted by four of her sisters, and it appears that most of the town turned out to see the Lincolns off.

A newspaper reports "The levee lasted from seven to twelve o'clock in the evening, and the house thronged by thousands up to a late hour. Mr. Lincoln received the guests as they entered and were made known. They then passed on, and were introduced to Mrs. Lincoln, who stood near the center of the parlors, and who . . . acquitted herself most gracefully and admirably."

Another reporter writes, "Behind [Lincoln] on the sofa were his two little boys, about eight and four years of age respectively, the youngest of whom was as noisy as a cub wolf. After a considerable time, the noise of the little urchin attracted the father's attention. Thereupon, turning about, and stooping down . . . he had some of the pleasantest words for the little fellow, that can be imagined. Thereafter there was no noise while I remained. Mrs. Lincoln, who is a squatty, pleasant little woman, receives her visitors with an easy gracefulness that makes all feel comfortable."

(Baltimore, MD), 8 February 1861, 2:3; Illinois Daily State Journal (Springfield), 9 February 1861, 2:3; Henry County Chronicle (Cambridge, IL), 26 February 1861, 2:3-5.

(I finally found an online, day-by-day Lincoln calendar! That said... I'm having so much fun researching these historical entries that I'm going to continue doing my own version in honor of the Lincoln Bicentennial.)

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