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Download Abraham Lincoln: A Life 1859–1860: The “Rail Splitter” Fights For and Wins the Republican Nomination Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Abraham Lincoln: A Life 1859–1860: The “Rail Splitter” Fights For and Wins the Republican Nomination Audiobook, by Michael Burlingame Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Michael Burlingame Narrator: Lloyd James Publisher: Gildan Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: Abraham Lincoln: A Life Release Date: July 2009 ISBN: 9781596594289
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Unite With Us and Help Us to Triumph

Building the Illinois Republican Party (1855–1857): Lincoln struggles to form a new party to take the place of the defunct Whig party. He has strong doubts that a peaceful end to slavery is possible. Joining with anti-slavery, anti-nativist forces, Lincoln launches the Republican Party of Illinois and the first Republican convention takes place. Supporting a non-radical anti-slavery platform Lincoln intervenes between radicals and conservatives to settle disputes at the convention. When the Dred Scott case is decided, Lincoln publicly denounces the court decision. His finest debates with Stephen A. Douglass take place and Lincoln calls into question the hypocrisy of the Southern disgust of race mixing, as the population of Southern mulattos “dwarfed” that of the north.

A House Divided” 

Lincoln vs. Douglass (1857–1858): Stephen Douglass vies for Republican support and begins to deny his affiliations with Democrats, stating that he had planned to curtail the spread of slavery geographically by building a railroad. Yet as late as 1858, Douglass wrote often of his belief, which had historical precedent, that blacks were not self-governing citizens and could not be granted passports. Lincoln saw him as a threat in that Douglas’ views were able to win Republicans and at the same time woo Democrats. During this time, Lincoln delivers his famous “house divided” speech in which he claims that slavery must either exist or cease to exist in all territories.  

A David Greater than the Democratic Goliath” 

The Lincoln-Douglas Debates of 1858: Despite Douglass being more popular than Lincoln, he lost many supporters due to strong and growing anti-slavery sentiments, a dwindling support from the Whig party, and a general dissatisfaction with the Democrat party. Douglass arrived well dressed for the debates with horse-drawn carriages and bands, whereas Lincoln would arrive quietly by train, and in very shabby clothing. Douglass often took to misquoting and lying, which local newspapers noted, sparking harsh criticism of him. The press also purposefully published inaccurate transcriptions of Lincoln’s speeches. Democratic election fraud was largely at play as Republicans failed to gain control of the legislature although the Republican popular vote was larger than it had been in 1856.  

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About the Author

Michael Burlingame is the Chancellor Naomi B. Lynn Distinguished Chair in Lincoln Studies at the University of Illinois, Springfield. He is the author of Abraham Lincoln: A Life and The Inner World of Abraham Lincoln; he is also the editor of An Oral History of Abraham Lincoln: John G. Nicolays Interviews and Essays and Lincolns Journalist: John Hays Anonymous Writings for the Press, 1860–1864. Burlingame has received a number of awards and accolades throughout his career, including the Abraham Lincoln Association Book Prize, the Lincoln Diploma of Honor from Lincoln Memorial University, and was inducted into the Lincoln Academy of Illinois. He currently resides in Springfield, Illinois.

About the Narrator

Lloyd James (a.k.a. Sean Pratt) has been narrating since 1996 and has recorded over six hundred audiobooks. He is a seven-time winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award and has twice been a finalist for the prestigious Audie Award. His critically acclaimed performances include Elvis in the Morning by William F. Buckley Jr. and Searching for Bobby Fischer by Fred Waitzkin, among others.