Resources about Abraham Lincoln.

This folder contains all readings, videos/slides & exercises for this unit.

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Abraham Lincoln’s Crossroads is a classroom activity designed to support the National Constitution Center’s online game of the same name and the nationally touring exhibition “Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War.” The online game is intended for advanced middle- and high-school students. It invites them to learn about Lincoln’s leadership by exploring the political choices he made. An animated Lincoln introduces a situation, asks for advice, and prompts players to decide the issue for themselves before learning the actual outcome. Using this resource, students will work collaboratively to compile results and ultimately be assessed on their findings. There are two variations on this activity. The first is designed to have students experience and use the Lincoln’s Crossroads online activity to gather and synthesize information. The second is to use the Lincoln’s Crossroads online activity as an introduction to the museum exhibit “Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War,” currently on national tour.
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This unit explores the political thought of Abraham Lincoln on the subject of American union. For him, the union was not just a structure to govern the national interests of American states; it also represented a consensus about the future of freedom in America—a future where slavery would eventually be eliminated and liberty protected as the birthright of every human being. Students will examine Lincoln's three most famous speeches—the Gettysburg Address and the First and Second Inaugural Addresses—in addition to a little known fragment on the Constitution, union, and liberty to see what they say regarding the significance of union to the prospects for American self-government.

Upon completing this unit, students should have a better understanding of why Lincoln revered the union of the American states as "the last best, hope of earth."

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Whether it be called the Civil War, the War between the States, the War of the Rebellion, or the War for Southern Independence, the events of the years 1861-1865 were the most traumatic in the nation's history. 

This curriculum unit will introduce students to several important questions pertaining to the war. In the first, they will examine original documents and statistics in an attempt to determine the strengths and weaknesses of each side at the start of the conflict. The second addresses the two turning points of the war-the concurrent battles of Gettysburg and Vicksburg-as well as the morality of the Union's use of "total war" tactics against the population of the South. Finally, in the third lesson students will examine a series of case studies in Abraham Lincoln's wartime leadership; by using primary sources they will be asked to assess whether, based on his performance during his first term of office, he deserved a second.

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While the Civil War began as a war to restore the Union, not to end slavery, by 1862 President Abraham Lincoln came to believe that he could save the Union only by broadening the goals of the war. The Emancipation Proclamation is generally regarded as marking this sharp change in the goals of Lincoln's war policy. Under his authority as the Commander in Chief, President Lincoln proclaimed the emancipation, or freeing, of the enslaved African Americans living in the states of the Confederacy which were in rebellion.

The Proclamation was, in the words of Frederick Douglass, "the first step on the part of the nation in its departure from the thralldom of the ages." Through examination of the original document, related writings of Lincoln as well as little known first person accounts of African Americans during the war, students can return to this "first step" and explore the obstacles and alternatives we faced in making the journey toward "a more perfect Union."

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Emancipation Proclamation, Leland-Boker Edition, 1864 - Primary Source

by Education Department National Constitution Center
Enacted in 1862, this edition of the Emancipation Proclamation was auctioned to raise money for Union troops during the Civil War. It is signed by President Abraham Lincoln and Secretary of State William Seward.
Curriki RatingNR gives us articles, videos and interactive resources to help students better understand the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and related topics.
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