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Home > History > Abraham Lincoln Biography in Seven Pages - the Presidential Years Part 4

Abraham Lincoln Biography in Seven Pages - the Presidential Years Part 4

This page describes the end of Lincoln's presidency and his assassination.

Lincoln's Second Inaugural Speech

Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address

Gettysburg Address

After the historic victories at Gettysburg and Vicksburg, the situation had vastly improved for the Union, but the war was far from over. On November 22, 1863, President Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address at the dedication of the Soldiers National Cemetery at Gettysburg. The 272 word speech, which followed a two hour address by Harvard professor Edward Everett, would become one of the greatest speeches in American history.

Lincoln Appoints Grant

In March of 1864, President Lincoln appointed General Ulysses S. Grant Commander of the Army of Potomac, the main branch of the Union Army. Finally, after nearly three years of war, the President had found a general who would pursue fleeing Confederates. Grant, known as "Unconditional Surrender Grant" after his exploits at Fort Donelson, Tennessee, in 1862, was by this time a Union hero after leading the Army of theTennessee to numerous victories in the West, including those at Shiloh and Vicksburg. Grant would spend 1864 waging his bloody Overland Campaign through much of the state of Virginia, suffering massive casualties while gradually diminishing the numbers and spirit of Lee's Army of Northern Virginia. Eventually, Grant would corner Lee's Army at Petersburg, Virginia, where he staged a ten-month siege. During the siege, Lincoln would visit Grant's headquarters at City Point, outside of Petersburg, where his presence excited and inspired the Union soldiers.

Georgia Falls - the End is Near for the Confederacy

Meanwhile, Union General William T. Sherman struck another blow to the spirit of the Confederacy with his destructive march through the state of Georgia, which would become known as Sherman's March to the Sea. Sherman's Army destroyed farms, railroad lines, and virtually anything in its path. After Sherman's capture of Atlanta, Georgia, President Lincoln easily won re-election to a second term. In contrast to his campaign platform in 1860, Lincoln made the emancipation of slaves a primary emphasis. Over 78 percent of Union soldiers would support his bid for a second term as President.

Surrender!

On April 9, 1865, the Confederate States of America surrendered at Appomattox Courthouse, Virginia. The Civil War was over and the Union would be preserved. At this point, President Lincoln had to consider the complicated task of reconstructing the Union and how to re-integrate the Confederate states back into the United States.

The Unthinkable

Lincoln believed in a policy of forgiveness and took a moderate approach to reconstruction, hoping to reconstruct the Union as quickly as possible rather than indefinitely punish the rebel states. Unfortunately, the President did not have much of a chance to preside over Reconstruction. Just five days after the end of the war, Southern sympathizer and actor John Wilkes Booth assassinated the President while he was watching a play at Ford's Theater in Washington, D.C. Lincoln's bodyguard had apparently fallen asleep, allowing Booth access to the Presidential box. Lincoln died at 7:22 the next morning at the Peterson House across the street from the theater. Upon his death, Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton uttered the timeless words "Now, he belongs to the ages."

You have Completed the Entire Biography!

Abraham Lincoln Articles

Abraham Lincoln Reading Comprehension (Grades 5 and up). These Include Between 7-10 Critical-Thought, Multiple Choice Qustions. Online Versions Give Immediate Feedback and Score Reports

Abraham Lincoln Activities

  • Important Places in the Life of Abraham Lincoln Interactive Map - This interactive map allows students to explore the important places in Abraham Lincoln's life such as New Salem, Springfield, New York City, and many others.
  • Mr. Polk's War - This captivating printable requires students to understand the concept of manifest destiny and to conduct a mock interview in which they answer tough questions in the role of Abraham Lincoln (against the Mexican-American War) and in the role of President James K. Polk (in support of the war).
  • Futility Versus Immortality - This activity requires students to analyze the qualities of poor leaders such as Franklin Pierce and James Buchanan and contrast them with a leader such as Abraham Lincoln.
  • I'll Always Remember Where I Was - This historical prompts requires students to imagine the earth-shaking effect the news of the Emancipation Proclamation had on Americans in 1862. In the spirit of the Emancipation Proclamation, students must write about the biggest news event of their lives and describe its impact.
  • The Power of Dreams - This printout describes Abraham Lincoln's famous dream about his own assassination and then requires students to describe and draw a scene from a powerful dream they've had.
  • Oh Captain! My Captain! - This printout describes Walt Whitman's famous Oh Captain! My Captain! elegy to President Lincoln and then asks students to think of their own hero and to write a similar poem.
  • Primary Source Analysis - Lincoln's Letter to Fanny McCollough This printable activity requires students to analyze a famous condolence letter written by Abraham Lincoln to a teenage girl after her father was killed in the Civil War.
  • With Malice for None, With Charity for All Decoding Puzzle - This activity requires students to decode and interpret the famous presidential quote uttered by Abraham Lincoln.
  • Dr. Samuel Mudd - Critical Thought Questions The printable narrative that describes the role Dr. Mudd played after Lincoln's assassination. It includes three short-answer questions regarding the main ideas of the article content, critical thought about the content, and vocabulary from the passage.
  • Ms. Laura Keene - Critical Thought Questions This printable narrative that describes the role Ms. Laura Keene played after Lincoln's assassination. It includes three short-answer questions regarding the main ideas of the article content, critical thought about the content, and vocabulary from the passage.
  • The Execution of Mary Surratt - Critical Thought Questions - This printable narrative describes the circumstances in the Mary Surratt execution . It includes four short-answer questions regarding the main ideas of the article content, critical thought about the content, and vocabulary from the passage.
  • Abraham Lincoln Paragraph Paramedics - Find and correct the spelling, punctuation, and usage errors in the paragraph. Click on the error and then type in the correction. Immediate feedback is given.
  • Presidential Quotes - This activity first requires students to match the famous quote with the president. Next, students must choose their favorite quote and attempt to explain it in detail.
  • Presidential Heights - Did you know James Madison was the shortest president? Did you know Abraham Lincoln was the tallest president? This fun math activity requires students to answer questions about the heights of presidents by viewing the bar graph and making conversions from feet to inches and inches to feet.
  • Printable Presidents Word Search
  • - All 45 are in there!
  • Illinois State Quarter (Featuring Lincoln) Coloring
  • Lincoln Memorial Coloring
  • Lincoln Home National Historic Site Video

Online Games Involving Lincoln

  • Presidential Mismatch - Students must rearrange the presidential chart so that the presidents are in the correct order in which they served. The number of presidents used in the game is customizable. The timer allows for friendly competitions. Students who enjoy history will love this game!
  • Currency Mismatch - This is a wildly fun game that requires students to drag and drop the correct presidential faces to their correct dollar bills. The game is timed and makes for awesome friendly competitions within a classroom.
  • Glamour Legends - This fun game allows students to dress up George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Benjamin Franklin, Harriet Tubman, or Christopher Columbus in more modern, or more primitive clothes.
  • Presidents Word Search - This is an online word search with the 45 presidents. Choose with or without a timer.

United States Presidents

 1. George Washington  16. Abraham Lincoln  32. Franklin D. Roosevelt
 2. John Adams  17. Andrew Johnson  33. Harry S. Truman
 3. Thomas Jefferson  18. Ulysses S. Grant  34. Dwight D. Eisenhower 
 4. James Madison  19. Rutherford B. Hayes  35. John F. Kennedy
 5. James Monroe  20. James A. Garfield  36. Lyndon B. Johnson
 6. John Quincy Adams  21. Chester A. Arthur  37. Richard Nixon
 7. Andrew Jackson  22/24. Grover Cleveland  38. Gerald R. Ford
 8. Martin Van Buren  23. Benjamin Harrison  39. Jimmy Carter
 9. William Henry Harrison  25. William McKinley  40. Ronald Reagan
10. John Tyler  26. Theodore Roosevelt  41. George H.W. Bush
11. James K. Polk  27. William Howard Taft  42. Bill Clinton
12. Zachary Taylor  28. Woodrow Wilson  43. George W. Bush
13. Millard Fillmore  29. Warren G. Harding  44. Barack Obama
14. Franklin Pierce  30. Calvin Coolidge  45. Donald J. Trump
15. James Buchanan  31. Herbert Hoover  

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