The South’s surrender was a month away when Lincoln delivered his Second Inaugural. Lincoln looks back on the war and ahead to the task of rebuilding the nation. A little over a month later, he was assassinated.
March 4, 1865
At this second appearing to take the oath of the presidential office, there is less occasion for an extended address than there was at the first. Then a statement, somewhat in detail, of a course to be pursued, seemed fitting and proper. Now, at the expiration of four years, during which public declarations have been constantly called forth on every point and phase of the great contest which still absorbs the attention, and engrosses the energies of the nation, little that is new could be presented. Read more