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Lincoln at Cooper Union: The Speech That Made Abraham Lincoln President

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 20, 2005

    Lincoln in New York

    Of all of Lincoln's pre-Presidential speeches, the one he gave at New York City's Cooper Union in February 1860 stands out as the most historically significant: it made him president; it compelled the South to secede; and it saved the Union. And, yet, as Professor Holzer points out, this speech, while mentioned in history books, is rarely given the recognition it deserves. His comprehensive and readable 'Lincoln at Cooper Union: The Speech that Made Abraham Lincoln President', rectifies this terrible oversight. This is not a step-by-step examination of Lincoln's references in, and the rhetorical craftsmanship of, the speech, although those are explored thoroughly. The book also explores the heretofore unacknowledged campaigning savvy that Lincoln possessed. He knew he had to come to Gotham to convince the Eastern Republicans of his credibility. He knew the importance of the local newspaper printers, like Bryant and Greeley. He understood the importance of having a visual aid, like a Matthew Brady photograph. But, most important, as Professor Holzer takes great pains to reveal, Lincoln did not want to appear to be an abolitionist. That would border on radicalism which would be a guarantee of defeat. As a bonus, 'Lincoln at Cooper Union: The Speech that Made Abraham Lincoln President', presents us with a unique view of 1860 New York: the thieves at the docks; the 'mass transit' of the age; the hunger for entertainment, of which political speeches were a significant part; the elegance and extravagance of the rich; and the desperation of the Five Points poor. 'Lincoln at Cooper Union: The Speech That Made Abraham Lincoln President' is a wonderful book that will please anyone interested in American History, New York City, or oratory. And Professor Holzer deserves our thanks for making it so fascinating. It only reflects his own passion for the subject.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 17, 2012

    Good read

    Gives a great break down of Lincoln's approach to a critical speech and lets the reader understand how smart Lincoln truely was. Anyone wanting to gain a more indepth understanding of our best President should read this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 3, 2011

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