Second Inaugural Address

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SecondInaugural Address

Thisaddress focused on the then civil war that broke out in the UnitedStates, which stemmed from the issue of slavery. Lincoln’s approachon the subject was based on the principles found in the Bible. Hecited Divine providence in order to help the people understand thereason the war occurred and the tragedies that resulted from it. Inthe message, Lincoln sided with neither of the parties and instead,mentioned the mistakes each committed. Both parties maintained thesame faith in the same God yet both believed that their convictionswere correct. In balancing this, he said that God’s will is noteasily and directly given to man, hence, the Divine providence. Assuch, unity was called, albeit with sadness because of the tragediesthat occurred by submitting the fate of the country to God’s will,without necessarily pointing out particularly which of them is rightor wrong. Instead, all must accept the will of God as “thejudgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.”

Fromthe Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglas

FrederickDouglas is a mixed race slave who fought for freedom. In thisbiography, Douglas described the events in his life and thesufferings he had to hurdle in order to achieve freedom. He had noknowledge about his personal life, like all slaves for suchinformation were concealed to them. At an early age, he had beenrelatively privileged compared with other slaves for he was nottreated harshly and was taught how to read and write. However, thisprivilege was short-lived and soon he also suffered the injusticesexperienced by other slaves. His mas was Captain Anthony, whoaccording to some people was his biological father. He continued tolearn how to read and write with the help of other boys and thisopened his mind to seek freedom from all the injustices he saw andinexperienced as a slave. He then planned to escape, although thiscame with failures and obstacles. When he successfully had a dealwith Hugh Auld, who was his master, he was able to draft a plan toescape to the North and live as a free man. In New York City, heeventually got united with his fiancée where they were able to getmarried. There, he began to participate into campaigns that aim toend slavery.


Lincoln,Abraham. “.” TheAmerican Tradition Literature. Ed.George Perkins. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2009. 861-. Print.

Douglas,Frederick. “Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglas.” TheAmerican Tradition Literature. Ed.George Perkins. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2009. 887-. Print.