Savior of the Union

HD_LincolnScupture.previewPerhaps Lincoln’s most enduring legacy has been his reputation as “Savior of the Union.”  Most Americans venerate him as the essential president –the one who saved the nation at its moment of greatest peril.  But in the classroom, that marble image can take a significant beating as teachers and students find themselves arguing over Lincoln’s actions as commander in chief.  In particular, Lincoln’s defiance of Chief Justice of the United States Roger Taney (Dickinson College, Class of 1795), over the issue of civil liberties leaves many students wondering at what cost was the union saved.  Documents in this section offer Lincoln’s perspective and numerous examples of his rigorous defense of his administration’s wartime policies.

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How should we teach Lincoln’s nationalism?

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Editor: Matthew Pinsker
House Divided Project
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Dickinson College
Carlisle, PA 17013

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David W. Blight
Catherine Clinton
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Harold Holzer
James Oakes
Anne Sarah Rubin

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