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The Athenaeum. (Atlanta, GA) 1898-1925, February 01, 1925, Image 13

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THE ATHENAEUM 155 “hit it” and “hit it hard.” Here we find the beginnings of the great soul from which love, equality and justice for all humanity emanat ed. After returning from his trip southward, Lincoln’s family moved to Illinois near Decatur. He fell under the influence of Offut, a mer chant who seemed to have a great deal of interest in Lincoln. After Offut left Lincoln remained and served the community in various roles—postmaster, Deputy Surveyor, clerk, and the like, rapidly _ growing in public approval and esteem. Lincoln volunteered as a I private in the Black Hawk war because he felt it his burden as a “part of the National debt.” He emerged from the conflict more I prepared to carry out the life program which was destined for him I to execute- As any normal youth is prone to do, Lincoln fell in love with ^ Ann Rutledge who shortly after the engagement died of sudden ill- i ness. He was nearly unmanned by this blow and for a time his \ friends believed the blow too much for him, but he came out all right and began to take a more active part in the life of his country. He was admitted to the bar in 1836 in Springfield. He was appointed to the governorship of the Oregon Territory, but his wife refused. About five years later the controversy over slavery broke out again but was partly suppressed through a series of Congressional acts known as compromise measures. The acts of congress greatly arous ed Lincoln and he longed for the opportunity to “hit” the whole system. v Just about this time in Lincoln’s life he suffered a defeat at the hands of Douglas, when by popular vote Douglas was returned to the Senate by a majority vote of five. Lincoln in commenting on the outcome of the election said: “I am glad I am of the late race. It gave me a hearing on the great and enduring question of the age, which I could have had in no other way; and though I now sink out of view, and shall be forgotten, I believe I have made some marks which will tell for the cause of liberty long after I am gone.” But Lincoln was not to pass from view; he was not to be lost from sight or memory. He had just embarked on the ship and was about to sail the stormy seas of life and anchor safe in a harbor characterized by non-slavery and good will. The sentiment of his “House-Divided” speech had just begun to echo. In, this speech he termed the slavery dispute as an “irrepressible conflict between two enduring forces” one of which must eventually triumph. The Republican convention of 1860 nominated Lincoln as its standard bearer and he was elected to the presidency over Brecken- bridge, the Democratic nominee, by a vote of 180 to 72. He spent the interval between election and inauguration pondering over the duties he was about to assume and speaking clearly, showing the South the futility of any attempt to secede from the Union. His inaugural address on March 4th was an' exemplification of this pond ered thought and he stated that all resolves and ordinances of at-