Talk:Abraham Lincoln

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Military rank[edit]

Veterans rank is different in each country. Wartime members of the United States military maintain their highest rank achieved during war after discharge.

10 U.S. Code § 772(e) states: A person not on active duty who served honorably in time of war in the Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine Corps may bear the title and wear the uniform of the highest grade held by him during that war.

There was initially some debate here over Lincoln's rank being that he was reduced from Captain when he re-enlisted as a Private to further continue his service. However, Under US Code 10, once he was discharged his rank as a veteran became Captain again as it is the highest uniformed rank he held during a war and is entitled to bear with regards to the uniformed rank of Commander-In-Chief.

the Black Hawk episode did not involve US forces, only local militia, and it was not a time of war. --better read up on Abe, Rjensen (talk) 07:34, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

Line in Intro[edit]

To Rjensen: I just think this line is not accurate, "When the North enthusiastically rallied behind the Union after the Confederate attack on Fort Sumter on April 12, 1861." It particularly clashes with the Baltimore riot of 1861 on April 19 (border states that stayed in the Union are usually considered part of the "North"), the unilateral suspension of habeas corpus by Lincoln soon after, the divisive ruling, which Lincoln ignored, in June 1861 by the U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice that such suspension was unconstitutional unless enacted by Congress, the filibustering in Congress by the opposition to Lincoln such that Congress did not pass a bill to suspend habeas corpus in summer 1861, and the subsequent arrest by Lincoln of a sitting U.S. Congresman and much of the Maryland legislature in September 1861 in defiance of the Chief Justice's ruling. The North's democracy, and entire political system, emphatically did not "enthusiastically rall[y] behind the Union after the Confederate attack on Fort Sumter." Large sections of the North's democracy in 1861 (rioters, Supreme Court Justices, arrested Congressmen, filibustering Congressmen) did not rally to Lincoln's military approach to the problem. Piledhighandeep (talk) 21:48, 28 October 2014 (UTC)

"Northern states responded quickly and with determination" [1] “The response of the loyal states to the call of Lincoln was perhaps the most remarkable uprising of a great people in the history of mankind,” [2]. Alanscottwalker (talk) 23:07, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
Maryland was never a "northern" state and was never so considered. Public opinion was clear enough: as Nevins says: "The thunderclap of Sumter produced a startling crystallization of Northern sentiment.... Anger swept the land. From every side came news of mass meetings, speeches, resolutions, tenders of business support, the muster of companies and regiments, the determined action of governors and legislatures." (Nevins 1: 74-75) Rjensen (talk) 02:10, 29 October 2014 (UTC)
I gave plenty of sources contradicting this. Maryland was part of the "North;" the Union border states are usually considered part of this polity. There were only two democratic polities involved in the Civil War. In any case the Chief Justice ruled against Lincoln and the Northern Congress itself defied Lincoln and did not suspend habeas corpus after that. A blog and a historian who wrote 80 years ago are not reasons to overturn modern historians. Perhaps more precision is needed here, but "the North enthusiastically rallied behind the Union" is inaccurate and ignores the lives of many filibustering Northern Senators amongst others in an attempt to oversimplify and emotionalize the early months. Piledhighandeep (talk) 06:09, 29 October 2014 (UTC)
Maryland = South = below the Mason-Dixon line and had slavery and its leaders were mostly pro-Confederate. The Nevins statement is unanimously supported by all recent historians (such as McPherson Battle Cry p 274: " this news galvanized the North.... Democrats joined in the Eagle-screen of patriotic fury." Goodheart (2011) p 180 says " the response to Sumter seemed to manifest itself among Northerners of every political and cultural hue as a kind of flag struck a transformative chord." Donald-Baker-Holt (2001) agrees (p 166) as does Fellman-Gordon-Sutherland (2003) pp 83-84. as does Paludan (1988) ch 1. The statement explicitly is about how the North responded to the attack on Fort Sumter in April. Mentioning a three people who months later disagreed on legal issues is not counter evidence it is a synthesis not accepted by any historian. Looking over the scholarship I will state that Nevins to this day has the best written coverage (he won several Pulitzers) based on the widest sources. Rjensen (talk) 07:03, 29 October 2014 (UTC)
Rjensen has it right, I think. The North did rally, even the Democrats, according to every history of the war I've read. And Maryland has never been considered the North until maybe the late 20th century. It was always Border South, as Kentucky and Delaware were. --Coemgenus (talk) 09:59, 29 October 2014 (UTC)
Piledhigh: you have not given sources, mentioning Wikipedia articles is not giving sources. See WP:NOR Moreover, saying "Maryland is the North", would not even make sense -- whatever it is, the North is a collection of many multiple states. Alanscottwalker (talk) 11:08, 29 October 2014 (UTC)
I think we have a consensus here. It is not true to speak of "many filibustering Northern Senators" (there was no filibuster). I think the compromise that will solve any misunderstanding is to refer to Americans above the Mason-Dixon line. I added a cite: There is a whole chapter 10 pp 254-74 in Russell McClintock, Lincoln and the Decision for War: The Northern Response to Secession (2008) pp 254-74 that details what happened. Two quotes: p 254 across the North, a tremendous wave of popular indignation translated into an outpouring of support for the administration... and p 255 "At the time, Northerners were right to wonder at the near unanimity that so quickly followed long months of bitterness and discord. Would not last throughout the protracted war to come – or even through the year – but in that moment the unity was laid bare the, and Northern nationalism usually hidden by the fierce battles more typical of the political arena." Rjensen (talk) 12:17, 29 October 2014 (UTC)
Yes. But we don't need quotes in the article, just summary for this, summary info -- would be better. It's hard (probably impossible) to gainsay that huge numbers of Massachusetts and New York troops, et al., were quickly in (occupying, even) the capital of the United States -- an unprecedented thing, in an unprecedented timeAlanscottwalker (talk) 15:40, 29 October 2014 (UTC)
I'm well aware of OR, but clicking the links to the WP articles I cross-referenced and viewing the references there is not, I thought, considered research. It seemed simpler than reproducing all those articles' references here. But, I can reproduce the references here if you would like. For instance, a reference to the filibustering in summer 1861 by Democrats in Congress (there was a filibuster), preventing Congress from suspending habeas corpus is found here.[1] Also, if Maryland and the border states are not part of the Northern polity, what are they part of? If they are, then the statement (about the entire North) is false. Also, how to explain the constitutional crisis in the North's federal courts and dissension in its Congress if the entire North (not just New York and New England) "enthusiastically rallied." It seems that the statement is no true Scotsman. If by the "North" we mean everyone who rallied, and then everyone who didn't is a "southern sympathizer" and not a true Northerner, even if, as Maryland, they voted to remain in the Union, then the statement is trivially true and not worth saying. Piledhighandeep (talk) 21:00, 29 October 2014 (UTC)
The border states are the border states. The states below the Mason-Dixon line were in the South. To this day, they are primarily in the South. [3]. Alanscottwalker (talk) 22:08, 29 October 2014 (UTC)
Your source for the filibustering claim, the Congressional Globe, is a primary source. Your attempt to look at the actual transcripts of the debate and conclude it was filibustering is Original Research. Phillip Shaw Paludan, a reliable secondary source, looks at the historical record and concludes that congressional inaction reflected a political determination that "it was better to stay quiet on the subject and let Lincoln take the heat. More important, however, their inaction showed that congressmen agreed with Lincoln. They were willing to let him do whatever it was that the Constitution allowed him to do." (source: The Presidency of Abraham Lincoln page 82) Do you have a reliable source that actually claims a filibuster took place?
What this special session of Congress was not afraid to do was approve all of the other war measures that Lincoln had implemented. On the final vote, only five Democrats opposed approval. This is a clear indication that Congress, like the vast majority of the Union population, favored an aggressive response to Fort Sumter. It was clearly possible to enthusiastically support the war while questioning one aspect of it.
You have been shown any number of reliable sources that recognize the huge outpouring of support for the Union after Fort Sumter. Other than your opinion, can you provide similar reliable sources that specifically reject this notion? You were offered a compromise by another editor (I think the compromise that will solve any misunderstanding is to refer to Americans above the Mason-Dixon line) -- perhaps it is time to accept that offer rather than to continue arguing against a clear consensus. Tom (North Shoreman) (talk) 00:25, 30 October 2014 (UTC)
I believe you have not understood my comment. The reference you are attacking is not mine, it comes from one of the WP articles I cross-referenced. My point in giving it was that the references (which I was accused of not providing earlier) were located in the WP articles I had cross-referenced, and that I had not reproduced them here, because it is easy enough to find them on those articles by clicking the hyperlinks I provided, rather than my cluttering this Talk page with them. By the way, if this source is OR you ought to delete it off the WP article it is in. I did not put it there. I put it here only as an example of one of the many references in those articles, and chose it because User:Rjensen claimed that there was no filibuster. By the way, if "Congress was willing to let [Lincoln] do whatever it was that the Constitution allowed him to do" then the Congress did not support his suspension of habeas corpus, because the U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice at the time had already ruled (in June), while sitting on a Circuit court, that the Constitution did not allow Lincoln to unilaterally suspend habeas corups without Congress approving it. I am questioning the impression that I think the sentence gives, that the Northern polity was united, when in fact it was not; a sitting U.S. congressman was arrested in defiance of the U.S. Supreme Court chief justice's circuit court ruling, how is this an "enthusiastic" untied government? The border states did not form a nation at the time. There were only two governments, the North and the South. Maryland, for instance, was a part of the Northern democracy, as its legislature had voted to remain a part of that polity. There is, when referring to the reactions of the two belligerent governments (North and South), no third national government called "the border states." Piledhighandeep (talk) 02:59, 30 October 2014 (UTC)
Two points. We have resolved the geographical question by saying "North of the Mason Dixon Line" -- that leaves out Maryland & Taney. Second Piledhighandeep has said nothing at all about what historians report as an amazing flag-waving unity following Sumter. He has no sources that say anything to the contrary. Rjensen (talk) 07:16, 30 October 2014 (UTC)
the Nevins quote is a brilliantly written very short summary of a lot of major events--I would be amazed if a Wiki editor could do a better job. Rjensen (talk) 12:51, 30 October 2014 (UTC)
The Mason Dixon line approach seems like a solution. The Nevins quote is well written; I simply thought, for a quote in the article, a more recent historian, if available, would be better. Thanks for humoring me. I know drive-by editing by self-appointed experts must be annoying. Piledhighandeep (talk) 18:43, 30 October 2014 (UTC)

Lincoln's middle name?[edit]

Was Lincoln born without a middle name, or is this an obscure fact of history? I searched the archives of this page and apparently no one has raised this issue, to my surprise. Could someone with historical experience verify this? JustinTime55 (talk) 16:28, 20 November 2014 (UTC)

Lincoln was not given a middle name (he was named for his grandfather who was also just "Abraham Lincoln"). The sources I checked, including these Roger J. Norton's Lincoln website and the book "Honest Abe: 101 Facts", concur on the fact that Lincoln didn't have a middle name. Shearonink (talk) 16:57, 20 November 2014 (UTC)

Error regarding General Grant in Lincoln article[edit]

The line states that President Lincoln " obtained Congress's consent to reinstate for Grant the rank of Lieutenant General, which no officer had held since George Washington." According to Winfield Scott's article, he obtained the rank in 1855. This would make General Grant the second such office holder since Washington. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:13, 27 November 2014 (UTC)

I think Scott held it as a brevet rank only. --Coemgenus (talk) 14:14, 27 November 2014 (UTC)
    • ^ Congressional Globe, Thirty-Seventh Congress, First Session (1861), pp. 40–50, 64–71, 127, 137–44, 177, 180, 208, 217, 220, 234–35, 288–97, 332–36, 391–95, 451–54.