Thursday, November 19, 2009

Four Score and Seven Years

Four Score and Seven Years Ago....
Most of us reconize these words as the opening line to the famous "Gettysburg Address" given by President Abraham Lincoln , but did you know that today (Novemeber 18th) is the 146th aniveresary of that speach?

Having been invited to attend the dedication of a cememtery he stayed at the home of David Wills
When David Wills invited President Abraham Lincoln to stay in his home before the dedication of the Gettysburg military cemetery, he hardly suspected that America's most famous speech would be completed in his guest bedroom
Wills, a prosperous 32-year-old attorney, owned the largest house on the town square. Under his direction, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania purchased 17 acres for a cemetery to honor the Union dead from the July battle. He arranged for the cemetery dedication on November 19, 1863, with Edward Everett as the main speaker. Lincoln was invited to offer "a few appropriate remarks."

Those few remarks now reamain an important part of American history.
"Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate -- we can not hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth. "

If you ever get a chance to go to Gettysburg please please go the National Cemetery you will be glad you did.

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Blogger Betsy from Tennessee said...

My hubby wrote a similar blog today. I hope he takes me to Gettysburg someday. I have never been there and want to go.

Thanks for the great post.

November 19, 2009 at 4:18 PM  
Blogger George said...

What a wonderful post. I guess I could talk about great minds ...
I hope to get busy to Gettysburg one of these days. It's been a long time since I was there. We'll let you know when we plan a trip.

November 19, 2009 at 5:08 PM  
Blogger KathyA said...

I always get chills when I read or hear that speech. Thanks for bringing it to us today.

On the same theme, did you ever read any of Rupert Brook's works? He was a British poet who died, as so many did, during WWI. One of his best known poems, "The Soldier", resonates Lincoln's thoughts about the slain men blessing the ground.

It begins, "If I should die, think only this of me, that there's some corner of a foreign field that is forever England..." Ironically, he died near Greece and is buried there.

November 19, 2009 at 7:18 PM  
Blogger Linda said...

I knew that we brilliant minds were going to think alike on this one! I had that one comment, though, from a gentleman who obviously doesn't care for President Lincoln at all! It's like I hit a sore spot or something!

November 20, 2009 at 12:06 AM  

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