Page:Abraham Lincoln address (1909).djvu/6

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and avouched to the world the conduct and the character of their representative head and his leadership, and ye think every one who loves the memory of the Confederacy, and of our great struggle to maintain it, ought to feel gratified and satisfied with the result.

This year is the centennial of the birth of Abraham Lincoln, the civic leader and official head of the United States during the existence of the Confederacy, and the North has with singular temerity, as it seems to us, thrust his character and conduct before the world, some of them even claiming that he was the "greatest, wisest and godliest man that has appeared on the earth since Christ." (See Facts and Falsehoods, 4.)

This being true, and since some Southern writers have united in these, it seems to us, unmerited adulations of this man, no apology would seem to be necessary for enquiring as to the real basis of the claims of these eulogists of Mr. Lincoln to the admiration, veneration and alleged greatness now attempted to be heaped upon him.

In this discussion we would, if we could do so and speak the truth, gladly adopt the Roman maxim, to speak nothing but good of the dead. But since some of Mr. Lincoln's nearest and dearest friends (?) have not seen fit, or been able to do this, surely a Southern writer should not be criticized or judged harshly for repeating what some of these friends, who apparently knew him best and loved him most, and who tell us they are only telling what they know to be true of this remarkable man, have to say about him, his character and his conduct.

That the career of Mr. Lincoln was one of the most remarkable recorded in history, and that he must have had some element of character which made that career possible, no one will deny. But that he was the pious and exemplary Christian, the great and good man, "the prophet, priest and king," the "Washington," the "Moses," the "Second to Christ," now being portrayed to the world by some of his prejudiced and intemperate admirers, we unhesitatingly deny, and we think it our duty, both to ourselves and to our children, to correct some of the false impressions attempted to be made about this man's character and career, let the criticisms or consequences be what they may.

We have no right to do so, and we do not object, in the least, that Mr. Lincoln shall be put forward as the representative man