From: jennifer shaub
Time: 8:22:18 PM
Remote Name: 184.108.40.206
Jennifer Shaub 4/19/00 Weekly Report
Lincoln delivered his Inaugural Address on March 4, 1861 to an anxious country on the brink of a civil war. Both Unionists and Southerners received Lincoln's conciliatory message with mixed emotion. Lincoln's Inaugural Address was given as a final failed attempt to unite the country and promote respect for the Constitution. In his address, he builds around excerpts from the Constitution in order to avoid a direct confrontation with the issue of slavery. "No person held to service or labor in one State, under the laws thereof, escaping into another, shall in consequence of any law or regulation therein be discharged from such service or labor, but to be delivered up on claim of the party of whom such service or labor may be due"(Lincoln). Throughout his entire address, he attempts to console the Southern States and reassure them of his disinterest to interfere in the institution of slavery. Lincoln explained to his apprehensive southerners, "I believe I have no lawful right to do so"(Lincoln). Southerners received Lincoln's message with disfavor. Virginians interpreted parts of his message either a declaration of war or an attempt to coerce the Southern states to succeed. "The power confided in me will be used to hold, occupy, and possess the property and places belonging to the Government, and to collect the duty and imposts." Lincoln's Inaugural Address was given only a few weeks prior to the outbreak of America's bloodiest war. His attempt to unify the country and promote respect for Constitution failed. Much of his message was directed towards the Southern states, which inevitably disfavored his beliefs and ideals.