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Three or four years later he attended Crawford's school in the same locality.
In 1826 he received his last schooling under the tuition of Mr. Swaney. To reach this "institution of learning," he walked four miles and a half each way.
Later, as a "hired boy," he taught himself as best he could with his rude surroundings, often "siphering" on a wooden fire shovel or anything else that came in his way.
His reading was very limited, being confined to two or three books, but fortunately he had access to the great fountain of Biblical literature.
Obtaining access to the "Revised Statutes of Indiana," which could not be loaned from the constable's office, he early laid the foundation for legal study.
In 1831, he went to New Orleans on a flat-boat, with a little cargo of pork, hogs and corn. It was here that he first saw some of the abominations of slavery and the slave trade. The workings of the system greatly depressed him, and drew from him the emphatic and almost prophetic exclamation, "If I ever get a chance to hit slavery, I'll hit it hard."
It was after his return from this trip that he found an English grammar, and mastered it by the light of pine knots during the long winter evenings.
The Black Hawk war broke out in 1832, and Lincoln enlisted. Although without military experience, his personal popularity made him captain of his company.
After the war was over he became a candidate for the state lesrfslature, and although he was defeated, the campaign was of great service to him in the way of experience.
He began the study of law with borrowed books, and put his own knowledge into practice by drawing up legal papers, and also conducting small cases without remuneration.
Many volumes pertaining to the sciences now found their way into his hands, and also some of the standard works of literature.
He then sought and obtained the post of deputy surveyor of Sangamon county, and in this work he became an expert. He was often sought for as a referee when trouble arose concerning boundary lines, etc.
From 1833 to 1836 he was the postmaster of New Salem, having received the appointment as a Jackson democrat.
It was during this time he again became a candidate for the legislature. His campaign was personally conducted, and this time he was the victorious candidate.
It was at this session of the legislature that he met his great opponent, Stephen A. Douglas. In time,- he fully accorded him the title of "The Little Giant."
In August of 1835, Lincoln met with a terrible loss, being no less than the death of Ann Rutledge, the beautiful girl to whom he was 'betrothed. Nearly thirty years afterward he spoke lovingly of her to an old friend. "The death of this fair girl," said Mr. Herndon, "shattered Lincoln's happiness. He threw off his infinite sorrow only by leaping wildly into the political arena."
In 1836 he was again a candidate for the legislature. He was selfnominated, for this was before the days of caucuses and conventions. In the New Salem Journal he announced his platform, which contained a suffrage plank to the effect that all men and women who either bore arms, or paid taxes, should be allowed to vote.
Lincoln was elected in triumph. Sangamon county, which had usually gone democratic, voting the whig ticket by more than four hundred majority.
In 1837 Mr. Lincoln moved to Springfield, where his active life as a lawyer began, the state capital having been moved about that time from Vandalia.
In November of 1823 he was married to Miss Mary Todd.
Mr. Lincoln was first elected to congress in 1846.
One year later he took his seat as a member of the Thirtieth Congress. Other notable members at this time were Ex-President John Quincy Adams, Andrew Johnson, Alex. H. Stephens, besides Robert Toombs, Robert B. Rhett and others. In the senate were Daniel Webster, Simon Cameron, Lewis Cass, John C. Calhoun and Jefferson Davis. At the close of his .congressional services in 1849, Mr. Lincoln returned to Springfield and resumed the practice of law, although his fees were considered by his legal brethren "ridiculously small."
During the contest in Kansas, in 1855, Lincoln's views on the subject of slavery were fully expressed in a radical letter to Mr. Speed.
In 1858 Lincoln held his notable debates with Stephen A. Douglas.
In 1860 Abraham Lincoln received the nomination of the republican party for the Presidency; Stephen A. Douglas was the nominee of the democratic party and these two prominent men were again rivals.
Threatening times succeeded his election with the whole country aroused by threats of secession.
In March of 1861 he was inaugurated amidst the most ominous conditions that a new president was ever called upon to face.
He delivered an inaugural address which for wisdom and consistency has never been surpassed.
Following the fall of Fort Sumter, Mr. Lincoln issued, on the 15th day of April, a call for 75,000 volunteers.
Four days later he issued a proclamation for the blockade of Southern ports.
In 1862 he met with the terrible loss by death of his son Willie. In the midst of this great trial his thoughts reverted to his own mother, whom he lost when a child. "I remember her prayers," he said, "they have always followed me—they have clung to me all my life."
During the long war he was everywhere busy doing everything possible for the comfort of the soldiers, especially the sick and wounded.
On January 1, 1863, the emancipation proclamation was issued.
Following logically the policy of the emancipation act, he began the experiment of introducing colored troops into the armies of the United States.
In 1864 Abraham Lincoln was again elected President of the United States.
About the middle of August, 1864, an attempt was made upon Lincoln's life one evening as he was riding back from the Soldiers' Home. The bullet of the would-be assassin passed through the silk hat which the President wore, but at his request the matter was kept quiet.
On March 4, 1865, Mr. Lincoln was again inaugurated as President of the United States.
The great rebellion was brought to a successful close with great rejoicing over General Lee's surrender.
On the afternoon before his death he signed a pardon for a soldier who was under a death sentence. This act of mercy was his last official order.
On the 14th of April he fell by the hand of an assassin and the nation was in mourning.
James A. Garfield.
McKinley's Sketch of His Life.
"Mr. Speaker:—Complying with an act of congress passed July, 1864, inviting each of the states of the Union to present to National Statuary Hall the statues of two of its deceased citizens 'illustrious of their heroic renown, or distinguished by civic or military services' worthy of national commemoration, Ohio brings her first contribution in the marble statue of James Abram Garfield. There were other citizens of Ohio earlier associated with the history and progress of the state and illustrious in the nation's annals who might have been fitly chosen for this exalted honor. Governors, United States senators, members of the supreme judiciary of the nation, closely identified with the growth and greatness of the state, who fill a large space in their country's history; soldiers of high achievement in the earlier and later wars of the Republic; cabinet ministers, trusted associates of the martyred Lincoln, who had developed matchless qualities and accomplished masterly results in the nation's supreme crisis; but from the roll of illustrious names the unanimous voice of Ohio called the youngest and latest of her historic dead, the scholar, the soldier, the national representative, the United States senator-elect, the president of the people, the upright citizen, and the designation is everywhere received with approval and acclaim.
"By the action of the authorities of the state he loved so well and served so long, and now, by the action of the national congress in which he was so long a conspicuous figure, he keeps company to-day with 'the immortal circle' in the old Hall of Representatives, which he was wont to call the 'Third House,' where his strong features and majestic form, represented in marble, will attract the homage of the present and succeeding generations, as in life his great character and commanding qualities earned the admiration of the citizens of his own state and the nation at large, while the lessons of his life and the teachings of his broad mind will be cherished and remembered when marble and statues have crumbled to decay.
"James A. Garfield was born on the 19th day of November, 1831, in Orange, Cuyahoga county, Ohio, and died at Elberon. in the state of New Jersey, on the 19th day of September, 1881. His boyhood and youth differed little from others of his own time. His parents were very poor. He worked from an early age, like most boys of that period. He was neither ashamed nor afraid of manual labor, and engaged in it resolutely for the means to maintain and educate himself. He entered Williams College, in the state of Massachusetts, in 1854, and graduated with honor two years later, when he assumed charge of Hiram College in his own state.
"In 1859 he was elected to the senate of Ohio, being its youngest member. Strong men were his associates in that body, men who have since held high stations in the public service. Some of them were his colleagues here. In this, his first political office, he displayed a high order of ability, and developed some of the great qualities which afterward distinguished his illustrious career.
"In August, 1861, he entered the Union army, and in September following was commissioned colonel of the Forty-second Ohio Infantry Volunteers. He was promoted successively brigadier and major-general of the United States Volunteers, and while yet in the army was elected to congress, remaining in the field more than a year after his election, and resigning only in time to take his seat in the house, December 7. 1863. His military service secured him his first national prominence. He showed himself competent to command in the field, although without previous training. He could plan battles and fight them successfully. As an officer, he was exceptionally popular, beloved by his men, many of whom were his former students, respected and honored by his superiors in rank, and his martial qualities and gallant behavior were more than once commended in general orders and rewarded by the government with well-merited promotion.
"He brought to this wide range of subjects vast learning and comprehensive judgment. He enlightened and strengthened every cause he advocated. Great in dealing with them all, dull and commonplace in none, but to me he was the strongest, broadest, and bravest when he spoke for honest money, the fulfillment of the nation's promises, the resumption of specie payments, and the maintenance of the public faith. He contributed his share, in full measure, to secure national honesty and preserve inviolate our national honor. None did more, few, if any, so much, to bring the government back to a sound, stable, and constitutional money. He was a very giant in those memorable struggles, and it required upon his part the exercise of the highest courage. A considerable element of his party was against him, notably in his own state and some parts of his congressional district. The mad passion of inflation and irredeemable currency was sweeping through the West, with