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The Life and Public Service of General Zachary Taylor: An Address   By: (1809-1865)

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NOTE

After lying buried for almost three quarters of a century in the columns of a single newspaper, unknown even to Lincoln specialists, this eulogy on President Zachary Taylor was discovered by sheer accident. It was then brought to the attention of Rev. William E. Barton, D.D., of Chicago, who has long been an ardent student of Abraham Lincoln and has published several books about him. By diligent searching he was able to gather the many details which he has embodied in his Introduction to the eulogy, and the publishers have gladly coƶperated with him for the preservation of all the material in a worthy and attractive form.

4 PARK STREET, BOSTON September 1, 1922

THE LIFE AND PUBLIC SERVICE OF

GENERAL ZACHARY TAYLOR

THIS EDITION IS LIMITED TO FOUR HUNDRED AND THIRTY FIVE COPIES, PRINTED AT THE RIVERSIDE PRESS, CAMBRIDGE, U. S. A., OF WHICH FOUR HUNDRED ARE FOR SALE. THIS IS NUMBER [Handwritten: 273]

THE LIFE AND PUBLIC SERVICE OF GENERAL ZACHARY TAYLOR

AN ADDRESS BY ABRAHAM LINCOLN

[Illustration]

BOSTON AND NEW YORK HOUGHTON MIFFLIN COMPANY The Riverside Press Cambridge 1922

COPYRIGHT, 1922, BY WILLIAM R. BARTON

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

INTRODUCTION

The discovery of an unknown address by Abraham Lincoln is an event of literary and historical significance. Various attempts have been made to recover his "Lost Speech," delivered in Bloomington, in 1856. Henry C. Whitney undertook to reconstruct it from notes and memory, with a result which has been approved by some who heard it, while others, including a considerable group who gathered in Bloomington to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of its original delivery and of the event which called it forth, declared their conviction that "Abraham Lincoln's 'Lost Speech' is still lost." So far as I am aware no one now living remembers to have heard Lincoln's address on the death of President Zachary Taylor. Lincoln's oration on the death of Henry Clay is well known, and his speech commemorative of his friend, Benjamin Ferguson, also is of record. His eulogy on President Zachary Taylor, however, appears to have been wholly overlooked by Lincoln's biographers and by the compilers of various editions of his works. Nicolay and Hay make no allusion to it, either in their "Life" of Lincoln or in their painstaking compilations of his writings and speeches. I have found but one reference to it, that in Whitney's "Life on the Circuit with Lincoln."

Lovers of Lincoln are to be congratulated upon this discovery, of which some account is to be given in this introduction. The address was delivered in the City Hall in Chicago on Thursday afternoon, July 25, 1850. It was printed in one Chicago paper. It was set up from Lincoln's original manuscript, furnished for the purpose.

President Taylor died at Washington on July 9, 1850. The disease was diagnosed as cholera morbus. A number of other distinguished men were sick in Washington at the same time and apparently with the same disease. The death of Taylor was a hard blow to the Whig Party. Of its seven candidates for the Presidency, it succeeded in electing only two, William Henry Harrison and Zachary Taylor, and each of these died not long after his election.

Lincoln arrived in Chicago two days before the President's death. The "Chicago Journal" of Monday evening, July 8, 1850, reported:

Hon. A. Lincoln, of Springfield, arrived in town yesterday to attend to duties in the United States District Court, now in session in this city.

A meeting was held in Chicago on the night of the President's death, Tuesday, July 9, 1850, and arrangements were made for a memorial service. In accordance with the journalistic methods of the times, the daily papers reported the proceedings entire.

The committee appointed evidently acted promptly, for the same issue records that the committee had selected Lincoln as the eulogist, and that he had accepted. The formal acceptance, however, was not published until two weeks later, and just before the address itself was delivered... Continue reading book >>




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