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, May 01, 2009

Looking back at Lincoln: On May 1, 1863

Union troops in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania

On this day in 1863 - and after two rather desperate telegrams from Pennsylvania Governor Curtin, who feared that an invasion of his state was imminent - Lincoln replied with the following letter, which appears to be a telegram:

Executive Mansion, Washington,
May 1. 1863. [10:55 P.M.]

Gov. Curtin
Harrisburg, Pa.

The whole disposable force at Baltimore & elsewhere in reach have already been sent after the enemy which alarms you. The worst thing the enemy could do for himself would be to weaken himself before Hooker, & therefore it is safe to believe he is not doing it; and the best thing he could do for himself, would be to get us so scared as to bring part of Hooker's force away, and that is just what he is trying to do. I will telegraph you in the morning about calling out the militia A. LINCOLN

Lincoln was correct for the time-being; although Curtain was also right to be alarmed. By June, Lee had begun his Gettysburg Campaign which would culminate in one of the bloodiest battles of the Civil War... in a little Pennsylvania town destined to become infamous: Gettysburg.

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