Abraham Lincoln is a gaunt giant more than six feet high, strong and long-limbed. He walks slow, and, like many thoughtful men (Wordsworth and Napoleon, for example), keeps his head inclined forward and downward. His hair is wiry black, his eyes are dark gray; his smile is frank, sincere and winning. Like most American gentlemen, he is loose and careless in dress, turns down his flapping white collars, and wears habitually what we consider evening dress. His head is massive, his brow full and wide, his nose large and fleshy, his mouth coarse and full; his eyes are sunken, his bronzed face is thin, and drawn down into strong corded lines, that disclose the machinery that moves the broad jaw. This great leader of the ‘Republican’ party — this Abolitionist — this terror of the ‘Democrats’--this honest old lawyer, with face half Roman, half Indian, so wasted by climate, so scarred by a life's struggle, was born in 1809, in Kentucky. His grandfather, who came from Virginia, was killed by the Indians. His father died young, leaving a widow and several children. They removed to Indiana, Abe being, at that time only six years old. Poor and struggling, his mother could only afford him some eight months rough schooling; and in the clearings of that new, unsettled country, the healthy stripling went to work to hew hickory and gum-trees, to grapple with remonstrating bears, and to look out for the too frequent rattle-snake. Tall, strong, lithe and smiling, Abe toiled on as farm-laborer, mule-driver, sheep-feeder, deer-killer, wood-cutter, and, lastly, as boatman on the waters of the Wabash and the Mississippi.
This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.
An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.