Today In History Spotlights Feb. 12, 1809, Abraham Lincoln is Born

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Today’s History Spotlight

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Abraham Lincoln is born at Sinking Spring Farm near Hodgenville, Kentucky. In 1830, the Lincoln family moved to Springfield, Illinois, where Abraham himself later began work as an attorney. He served in the Illinois House of Representatives from 1834-1842 and then in the US House of Representatives from 1847-1849. Originally a member of the Whig Party, Lincoln switched to the Republican Party in 1854, which was founded largely on an anti-slavery tenet, as well as a platform that called for a restoration of the founding fathers’ true vision for the republic.

He served as president from 1861-1865, during which time he guided the US through the Civil War, its greatest moral and constitutional crisis, preserving the union and abolishing slavery by its outcome. Lincoln was shot by Confederate sympathizer John Wilkes Booth at Ford’s Theater in Washington DC on April 14, 1865. He passed away the next day. Lincoln is often ranked among the American peoples’ favorite presidents.

What Happened On This Day – February 12

  • 2002 The trial of Slobodan Milošević begins at The Hague. The former President of Yugoslavia and Serbia died 4 years later, before the trial’s conclusion.
  • 1994 Edvard Munch’s “The Scream” is stolen. The iconic painting, one of a series of four, was recovered several months later.
  • 1924 George Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue” premieres. The piece is among Gershwin’s best-known compositions and one of the most popular pieces of the symphonic jazz genre.
  • 1912 The last Emperor of China abdicates at the age of six. Puyi was expelled from the Forbidden City after a military coup in 1924. He died on October 17, 1967 aged 61.
  • 1909 The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is founded in the U.S. The NAACP is one of the oldest and most influential civil rights organizations in the United States.

Births On This Day – February 12

  • 1877 Louis Renault – French businessman, co-founded Renault
  • 1876 13th Dalai Lama
  • 1870 Marie Lloyd – English actress, singer
  • 1809 Abraham Lincoln – American lawyer, politician, 16th President of the United States
  • 1809 Charles Darwin – English scientist, theorist

Deaths On This Day – February 12

  • 2000 Charles M. Schulz – American cartoonist
  • 2000 Screamin’ Jay Hawkins – American singer-songwriter, producer, actor
  • 1979 Jean Renoir – French director
  • 1804 Immanuel Kant – Russian/German philosopher
  • 1789 Ethan Allen – American military leader

The sections “What Happened On This Day,” “Births On This Day,” and “Deaths On This Day” originally appeared at and is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Garrett Smith
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