Gettysburg Address

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 freedomand that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

Abraham Lincoln

November 19, 1863.

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10 Comments

  1. The phrase “Four scores and seven years ago” is quoted all the time. This saying is quoted all the time and for good reason. The Gettysburg address is one of the most famous speeches ever recorded in history. To give the speech some context, President Lincoln was invited to speak on behalf of the fallen Union soldiers from the battle of Gettysburg. Much like the rest of the civil war, the Battle Of Gettysburg was a very bloody altercation. An estimated 51,000 soldiers died, 23,000 of those being union soldiers. The civil war was terrible on many accounts. Not only was it a war, but a war fought solely on American soil, involving just Americans. National morale was seemingly at an all time low. Lincoln’s Gettysburg address, yet short, talked about a lot of things. It opens with a brief overview of the declaration of independence and how it pen points on how all men are created equal. He then goes on to talk about the current hardships that the country is going through and how important it is to push through and persevere. Simultaneously, he honors those soldiers who died at the battle of Gettysburg. The main point of the speech is to let those listening that though times are tough now and that a lot of people are dying and are going to die, all this is being done for a reason. Contrary to what some people may say, the civil war was a fight against slavery. As we know, Lincoln knew that in order for the country to continue in a good route, slavery needed to be done away with. The country couldn’t go any further divided the way that they were. The Gettysburg address speaks on this without directly referencing it. Like I said before, for such a short speech, it talks about so many topics. At the time, this was exactly what people needed to hear. There is a reason why so many years later, this speech is still being quoted and bought up to this day. This speech is an example of why president Lincoln’s legacy lives on to this day.

  2. The Gettysburg Address is one of the most impactful speeches that has ever been given in American History. Lincoln gave his speech to many heartbroken and low moral soldiers after the Battle of Gettysburg which is one of the deadliest battles in our history. Lincoln was invited to the reburial of fallen soldiers at the National Cemetery at Gettysburg. In only 217 words starting with what is now a famous phrase “Four score and seven years ago” which is referring to the signing of the Declaration of Independence. He was able to grow the morale of the at the point devastated soldiers to continue to fight the war for what they believed in. This speech was very special because it is considered one of the finest examples of English public oratory. Lincoln’s wording was just so perfect that he didn’t need a long speech like others that were given that day. In fact, at the same event a man that goes by the name of Everett gave a 2-hour oration that was supposed to be “The Gettysburg Address,” but it didn’t have the same effect as Lincolns as it was 2 hours long and 13,607 words long. Although speeches this long were common at cemetery events, Lincoln’s well-written and short speech touched the hearts of many at that event. I think that the best part of the speech is near the end where he makes a point talking about how the people who have died in the Battle of Gettysburg risked their lives for what they believed in, and the way to honor them is by finishing their mission. The is a very strong message as it makes you want to fight for the people that died before you. This speech gave the North a reason and pride to continue fighting for what they believed in. I believe that if this speech didn’t happen, the civil war could have ended in a much different way, and it would have changed our world forever. The North was in a bad spot as they lost a ton of soldiers and had no passion to fight anymore, but this speech gave them the pride they needed to continue the fight and make our country into what it is today.

  3. The Gettysburg Address is one of the most popular speeches given all time. President Lincoln gave this address in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania which was the spot of the worst battle in the Civil War. There were over 50,000 deaths in this battle with both sides suffering a high number of casualties. President Lincoln is giving this address four and a half months after the Union and Confederacy’s battle. In only 271 words, Lincoln gave one of the most memorable speeches of all time. He started off by saying “Four score and seven years ago” referring to the Declaration of Independence which was signed 87 years prior. President Lincoln’s speech lifted the moral of soldiers and a country who was enduring hardships throughout this time. His speech of only 271 words was much more significant compared to the speech of Everett who’s speech was over 13,000 words. Lincoln’s speech will never be forgotten in American history.

  4. The Gettysburg Address is unquestionably one of the most famous and impactful speeches in American history and its brevity is absolutely astonishing. In a mere 271 words, Abraham Lincoln was able to remind the American people that the continued fighting of a Civil War would only tear apart the people you are supposed to be on the same team with. Lincoln invoked the principles of human equality mentioned in the Declaration of Independence and bridged it to the over 50,000 casualties in the Battle of Gettysburg alone. With this battle being fought in the early 1860s, this nation was still in its infancy having only existed for less than a century. The Gettysburg Address was a stark reminder that the preservation of the Union created in 1776 should be the foremost focus of all Americans, and that fighting goes against everything the country is supposed to stand for. I think this speech has remained so prominent due to Lincoln’s ability to simultaneously reinvigorate national ideas of freedom and liberty while also paying tribute to the soldiers that had given their lives in order to achieve those ideas.
    In just ten sentences, President Lincoln’s speech ultimately marked the turning point of the war. Edward Everett, an American politician, pastor, educator, diplomat, and orator from Massachusetts, gave his 13,607 words, two-hour speech right before Lincoln – which was also well-received. However, Lincoln having only spoken for a few minutes, showcased his phenomenal speech writing and delivering abilities. To be able to talk about such a wide array of events and topics in so few words is the most impressive part of this speech in my opinion. A powerful tool when preparing speeches and when in front of the audience is appealing to their emotions, which Lincoln clearly did masterfully. Both sides of the war lost hundreds of thousands of men by that point and that made everyone feel a sense of loss and anger. By highlighting that all of the soldiers who had died had not done so in vain, Lincoln was able to connect emotionally with each listener and I think that’s what ultimately made the speech as powerful as it is. The Gettysburg Address proves how a speech’s ability to move the audience is paramount to its remembrance.

  5. The Gettysburg Address is often considered one of the greatest political speeches of all time, and that is not for no reason. The Gettysburg Address was a speech given by Abraham Lincoln at the, now known as, Gettysburg National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania to honor those who had given their lives during the Battle of Gettysburg. The Battle of Gettysburg was a very bloody and gruesome battle of the Civil War. 7,000 men died, 45,000 were wounded and 10,000 more were either captured or missing. As you can imagine after such a brutal and traumatizing event, the morale was very low. So many people lost loved ones and were heartbroken. Not only Gettysburg, but the whole region needed to lift and Abraham Lincoln was able to provide it. Lincoln started the speech by saying, “Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth, upon this continent, a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.” A score means 20 so Lincoln was referring to 87 years ago. That was 1776, the year the Declaration of Independence was signed. Throughout the speech, Lincoln was basically saying that the United States has to fight and persevere through this tough time and preserve the nation that was created by the Founding Fathers who wrote the Declaration of Independence in 1776. This is considered one of the greatest political speeches of all time and is so iconic because it explained America’s critical challenges in their historical context while simultaneously paying tribute to the men who lost their lives in the Battle of Gettysburg. It also marked the turning point of the Civil War because it turned away the Confederates and galvanized the Union. Overall, I believe that this speech is a monumental speech and is pivotal in the history of the United States. The outlook of our nation today could have been so much more different if this speech was not given because the Union North could have let the bad morale and heartbreak get to them and give up. By giving this speech, Abraham Lincoln changed the outlook of the United States for years to come.

  6. Lincon has been one of the great American Presidents who changed history and left behind great lessons that we shall all learn. The Gettysburg Address is part of the great legacy he left. Sadly we have forgotten about the lessons he left. He said, “government of the people, by the people, for the people.” Do we think our bipartisan system gives us a government by the people? Haven’t we learned that Republicans and Democrats are all the same? Haven’t we learned that both are just a bunch of old guys that barely work and want money, power, and attention? Nor Lincon or our founding fathers could imagine that we are still voting for people who do not represent the American people now that we are in an information era. It is incredible that people in 1860 who did not have phones, social media, or wifi, made a better choice than us with all of that information. Yet, incredibly, the Gettysburg Address is taught in almost every American learning institution, and we are still not capable of applying what Lincon said.

  7. The Gettysburg Address is a valuable piece of US history. Most speeches, especially those that remain important and relevant throughout history, have snippets or moments of being ‘short, sweet, and memorable.’ The Gettysburg Address manages to capture exactly that essence of great speech writing. IT is short, sweet, to the point, and most importantly remains to this day as a testament to our predecessors. Lincoln’s speech was delivered to an army of tired, low-morale soldiers barely holding onto a glimmer of hope. He uses the deaths of Union soldiers that died in the battle of Gettysburg to instill a sense of duty and pride in the remaining forces, successfully so. It was a reminder of what their purpose was, how far they have come, and the sacrifices that would be in vain had they nod continued the battle. The curious thing was that the Address wasn’t even the main speech of that ‘forum.’ In fact, the man before him, Edward Everett, had recited a long oration before hand, much like those that were traditionally spoken at cemeteries, was long, yet well received. However, in stark contrast, Lincoln was able to capture the hearts and minds of the Union Soldiers, among others, with a much shorter, yet equally well crafted address of his own. Curiously, instead of cheers, hype, or even applause after Lincoln’s speech, a at-the-time 19 year old Sarah A. Cooke Myers claims that there was a long period of silence after the speech. On the other hand, Historian Shelby Foote proclaims that there was some applause, although it was very quiet and more out of politeness. Lastly, Pennsylvania governor Andrew Gregg Curtin said that the audience was hushed out of respect for the president, although they were all impressed and remarked well about the speech post delivery. Regardless of what the reaction was, it is clear that there wasn’t as much excitement as one might think from such a pivotal speech. Instead, as the events that preceded it were quite sad and morbid, it makes sense to ascertain that all the soldiers and people present were likely quite proud, but solemn as they mourned the losses they incurred in the battle of Gettysbrug.
    Unfortunately for us, we do not have an official copy of the speech that Lincoln gave that day. Although we know the rough content, there are several copies and manuscripts that each have slightly different variations.

  8. The Gettysburg address is ultimately one of the most iconic speeches ever recorded by president Abraham Lincoln that impacted the United States. Abraham Lincoln is proclaimed as one of the greatest presidents cemented in U.S history because of his leadership and determination to end slavery. President Lincoln came into office by promising anti-slavery expansion in the United States, which led to seven states succeeding from the country and forming the confederacy. During the 1863s, the United States became a divided nation and partook in a bloody civil war, leaving a trail of dead bodies and broken spirits scattered throughout the Nation. As a result, President Abe Lincoln was forced to act quickly in a very delicate situation that most of us would have quit. The Gettysburg Address consisted of 272 careful and diligent words that served as a reminder to the people of what the union was fighting for, which was equality and freedom that our founding fathers set long ago. The Gettysburg Address was the turning point of the civil war and cemented the ideals for slavery to be abolished. Although Americans had to give up their lives for this cause Abraham Lincoln never discarded that matter and made sure that those lives were honored. The speech has a way of penetrating the hearts of its audience not just because of the way it’s constructed, but also because of Lincoln’s oratory skills. My oratory skills are terrible compared to Lincoln’s, which is why I highly look up to him, mostly because my speeches have never involved speaking to an audience that is in the midst of a war and is suffering greatly. It has been proved that most good speeches are the ones that efficiently accomplish their goal in a few words and minutes when presented. I agree with this because no audience wants to hear a long speech, but instead a short one that is inspirational which is what Lincoln accomplished when presenting the Gettysburg address.

  9. The Gettysburg Address is a very powerful speech that we still talk about today. In my opinion, it is so very powerful because it encompasses the cause of the entire fight of the civil war and the struggle the union ad to go through to fight against slavery. Abraham Lincoln uses very powerful language to describe the depth and magnitude of the still ongoing war at the time between American civilians, another reason why I believe this speech is so memorable. When he speaks on the deaths of soldiers on the side of the Union and how their deaths will not be in vain in such reverence, it is almost emotional to read. Another factor as to why I believe this speech is so important is because the American Civil War was at the time and still is to this day, the greatest crisis this country has ever faced, and the speech allows us who are living today a chance to understand the mindset of the President of the United States at the time. One could only imagine the mindset and the pressure Abraham Lincoln faced as the leader of a country that very well could have collapsed he anyone else where in his position. The speech allows us to understand some of the feeling that President Lincoln had as he spoke on the casualties of war, such as loss and grief. He understands that there are some who want the war to end because of the overwhelming loss of life and he empathizes with those who hold those emotions, but he understands that the country is at a crossroads and that one false move can seriously mean the loss of the country. This is why he begins the speech with invoking the history of the country and how it was founded. When he states that the country was founded on the idea of liberty and justice for all, he is saying that the Union’s main purpose of fighting is to stop slavery in the south and that stopping the fighting when the war is not over would be contradictory to the founding of the country. What is most remarkable is how short this speech is and how much emotion it conveys. I believe that it is rightfully held in the annals of American history as one of the most important speeches in this country’s history.

  10. This article caught my eye because I went on a trip to gettysburg during middle school and I found it interesting. The Gettysburg address obviously has to do with Gettysburg, the Gettysburg address is a speech by Abraham Lincon during the battle of Gettysburg. In this speech, Abraham Lincon was looking for human equality and freedom for humans. He was trying to help make things better. In addition to that, he was making an attempt to bring together both sides as they were in civil war. I find this as brave as Abraham Lincon because we were in the middle of a war when this speech was done.

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