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Abraham Lincoln: The Prairie Years and the War Years Paperback – Nov 2002

4.4 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 762 pages
  • Publisher: Harvest Books (Nov. 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0156027526
  • ISBN-13: 978-0156027526
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 3.6 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,019,058 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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First Sentence
IN THE year 1776, when the 13 American colonies gave to the world their famous Declaration of Independence, there was a captain of Virginia militia living in Rockingham County named Abraham Lincoln. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
It is fitting that the man whose 1916 poem popularized the expression "city of broad shoulders" for Chicago should write the definitive biography of Abraham Lincoln. The President who had to have the broadest shoulders of all, even more so than Franklin Roosevelt, since Lincoln presided over the American Civil War, came from the America's heartland, Kentucky, Indiana, and most certainly, Illinois. Carl Sandburg's monumental work was first published in 1954. Subsequently there have been various editions; mine was published by Harvest/HBJ in 1982. Sandburg, who was born not that long after the Civil War, says in the preface to this edition: "As a growing boy in an Illinois prairie town I saw marching men who had fought under Grant and Sherman..."

At over 1200 pages, Sandburg's portrait of Lincoln is an in-depth one, and the author has a knack for identifying telling details that illuminate Lincoln's character. For example, in terms of economics, he was a strong advocate of autarky; national self-sufficiency, calling the efforts to produce products abroad and bring them to America "useless labor" (p 155). The book is replete with photographs, a technology which finally came into its own during the Civil War. There is a telling one of Lincoln, in top hat, a full head taller than McClellan, and the rest of his staff, at a meeting in Antietam.

Long before teleprompters and speech writers, Lincoln was perhaps our most articulate President. Most famously, he is known for the Gettysburg address, but Sandburg highlighted other brilliant formulations, for example, during Lincoln's debates with Judge Douglas, in the campaign for the Senate seat in 1958, he said: "It is the eternal struggle between these two principles...
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Format: Paperback
This biography of lincoln is an unbiased look into the man's life. You'll find everything you would expect and much, much, more. This is not a book for the weak hearted reader. Many of the sections seem to be endless. This is not however a negative, the opposite is true. Sandburg's quest for a truly indepth redering of the Lincoln story creates these long spells and the pay off is just. Much of the humor in the book is dated and therefore will be lost on many readers. Once again, an outstanding book that gets an easy 5 stars.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
90-some-odd years ago, Carl Sandburg published the first part of a 6 volume biography of Abraham Lincoln (the last part was published in 1939). Realising that people might not want to read something that long, he pared it down to a 1 volume book of about Lincoln. This is that books.

The first third looks at Lincoln's pre-Presidential life, while the remainder looks at his presidency. This feels like a thorough book about Lincoln. You'll get a thorough feel for Lincoln. I didn't know a huge amount about him (beyond willing the Civil War, his assasination, and suspending habeas corpus), and it was well writen without feeling like the author wanted to impress us with the amount of research done.

My one grumble would be that when you precis such a long work, you're going to repeat points, and that occurs here, especially when it comes to the stories Lincoln told.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
When it arrived the binding was split on the inside, so there was a worry the pages would fall out which some did, but I chose this because of the reviews. It was a gift for my husband and he has now read it and said it was as good as the best reviews.
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