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Al Cross | Reflections on how the Civil War shaped Kentucky

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BridgeTheGap Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-14-11 09:25 AM
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Al Cross | Reflections on how the Civil War shaped Kentucky
One hundred fifty years ago today, on his way to Washington to become president of a nation that was tearing itself apart, Abraham Lincoln was on an overnight stop in Cincinnati.

He brought with him a speech he wanted to give in his native state, Kentucky, just across the Ohio River an address defending his silence, during four crucial months as president-elect, on policies regarding the secession of Southern states over the issue of slavery, a thriving institution in Kentucky.

It has been greatly pressed upon me by many patriotic citizens, Kentuckians among others, that I could in my position, by a word, restore peace to the country. But what word? I have many words already before the public; and my position was given me on the faith of those words. Kentuckians, he wrote, would expect the same of the three defeated candidates, all of whom got many more votes in his native state than he did. What Kentuckian, worthy of his birthplace, would not do this? he asked. Gentlemen, I, too, am a Kentuckian.

Lincoln wrote those words but never delivered them. He surely saw Kentucky across the river, but he didn't set foot in it. We don't know exactly why; we just know that his wish became a boat not boarded, a path not taken. |newswell|text|Opinion|p
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