Sunday, June 18, 2006

Gettysburg Address

Background information:

The Gettysburg Address was spoken by our 16th President, President Abraham Lincoln. It took place in 1863 during the Civil War, 4 months after the battle of Gettysburg. The Civil War occurred when the North part of our country was arguing against the South part. They argued about many things, such as the fairness of slavery and about many laws. Finally, they started a war. The casualties were even higher than 3 previous major wars that took place a long time ago. The battle of Gettysburg was the bloodiest battle in the war. The casualties were extremely high. So high, in fact, that President Lincoln, who was for the North, was asked to speak at a ceremony that the country was going to have in honor of those who fought at the battlefield. They actually dedicated a national cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

The Gettysburg Address:

"Four score and seven years ago, our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation, so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate—we can not consecrate—we can not hallow—this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us — that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion — that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain — that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom — and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."

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