This Fiery Trial: The Speeches and Writings of Abraham Lincoln Chapter Abstracts for Teachers

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Preface, Prologue, and I. Peculiar Ambition

• The "Preface" explains that Abraham Lincoln was largely self-educated and his literary abilities were extraordinary.

• Lincoln's writings display his knowledge of classic texts.

• Historians are drawn to Lincoln's rhetorical skills.

• In the "Prologue" Lincoln provided an autobiographical sketch to Jesse Fell, an Illinois newspaperman.

• Lincoln provided little information in the sketch and was guarded about private details.

• Lincoln was born in Hardin County, Kentucky in 1809.

• Lincoln led a rural existence with little education past grammar school.

• Lincoln worked on the farm until age 21 years old and went to Illinois.

• Lincoln served as a Captain of Volunteers in the Black Hawk War and rose the ranks.

• Lincoln was elected to the House of Congress in 1846.

• In "Peculiar Ambition" Lincoln writes to the people of Sangamo County in 1832 to introduce himself before running for public office.

• Lincoln discussed how everyone should receive a moderate...

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