You will be reading two of the most important speeches in American history; Abraham Lincoln’s “Gettysburg Address” and his “Second Inaugural Address,” as well as his last public speech (given on April 11, 1865). After finishing these readings, I want you to respond to the following questions.
1. How did Lincoln see the Civil War as an opportunity for the nation to bring forth a “new birth of freedom” (or liberty for all), and why was this necessary for the survival of American self-government?
2. How did Lincoln seek to restore the American union as the Civil War drew to a close? What blueprint did he establish for the post-war South?
3. Why do you think these speeches still resonate so strongly with Americans, over 150 years after the Civil War’s conclusion