Wednesday, April 14, 2010

On This Date, April 14, 1865, Abraham Lincoln Died

On the evening of April 14, 1865, Lincoln attended a performance at Ford's theater in Washington, D.C. A few minutes after 10 P.M. he was mortally wounded and died the next morning.

Lincoln's life was intertwined with Scots and Scottish-Americans. Here are a few examples:

1. By frequent intermarriages between the Boones and the Lincolns, they were closely allied. The Boones were Scots who emigrated through Northern Ireland to America. Daniel Boone was one of their more famous sons.

2. At New Salem, Illinois, Lincoln was influenced by the Scottish village philosopher, Jack Kelso. He introduced Lincoln to the writings of Robert Burns. The President often quoted Burns and could recite from memory all the verses of Tam O' Shanter.

3. He married Mary Todd and her family can be traced directly back to Scotland. Among the Covenanters forcibly sent to America after the Battle of Culloden were the Todds. They had fought with Washington through the American Revolution before moving westward with the Boones.

4. Robert E. Lee (Scotsman) surrendered to Ulysses S. Grant (Scotsman)
in the home of John McLean (Scotsman) to end the great Civil War.

5. When Lincoln was elected President, he was accompanied to Washington by two Scottish men: David Hunter of Chicago, who later became General David Hunter and Alan Pinkerton, the great detective. Pinkerton blamed himself for Lincoln's death.

6. Michael Fry has written: "It is possible, though unproved, that Lincoln himself had Scots blood. The district round his birthplace in the backwoods of Kentucky housed many Scottish settlers to whom his family might have been related."

On this date in 1865, America lost a great leader!

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