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Abraham Lincoln Saved the Union

By Ms. Watson

Teacher of Grades 2-3

When Abraham Lincoln gave his second inaugural address at the U.S. Capital on March 4, 1865, the end of the Civil War was in sight. Sherman had cut through the South, and Grant was slowly tightening the Union vise around Lee’s army at Petersburg. Yet Lincoln did not speak of triumph. Instead, he turned to the task of healing a broken nation.

He reminded listeners that the war would end the evil of slavery, and suggested that it was God’s will that both North and South pay for that evil. He urged his countrymen to maintain their faith in God’s wisdom as they began to “bind up the nation’s wounds.”

Lincoln’s second inaugural address, much like his address at Gettysburg, is inscribed on an inner wall of the Lincoln Memorial.

“Fondly do we hope, fervently do we pray, that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue until all the wealth piled by the bondsman’s two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said ‘the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.’”

At the Belmont devotional on March 2, Grades 2 and 3 students recited the last paragraph of Lincoln's speech, as follows:

"With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan--to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves, and with all nations.

Consider reading all of Lincoln’s second inaugural address, delivered on this day in 1865.


This historical thought was delivered by students in 2nd and 3rd grades at devotional on 3/2/23. Each week one class leads the student body in prayer, the Pledge of Allegiance, scripture recitation, a meditation, and an historical thought. Family and friends are welcome, Thursdays 8:30-9:05 am

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