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Of the use of the Bible as a text-book, the writer has personal knowledge; but one of Mr. Lincoln's stories discloses Lincoln's own memory of it. The incident comes to us from former VicePresident Adlai E. Stevenson, to whom it was related by Senator Henderson of Missouri. Senator Henderson called at the White House one day some months before the issue of the Emancipation Proclamation. The President was in one of his moods of deepest depression. He told Senator Henderson that he was greatly troubled by the question of the freedom of the slaves, and was under great pressure from the radical proponents of abolition, especially Charles Sumner, Henry Wilson and Thaddeus Stevens. Henderson, being from a border state, was concerned for the effect of such a proclamation upon the loyal people of those states, some of whom were slave-holders.

"Sumner and Stevens and Wilson simply haunt me," declared Mr. Lincoln. "They haunt me with their importunities for a proclamation of emancipation. Wherever I go, and whatever way I turn, they are on my trail. And still in my heart I have the deep conviction that the hour has not yet come."

Senator Henderson said that as Lincoln said

this he walked to the window, and looked out in silence upon Pennsylvania Avenue, his tall figure silhouetted against the window pane, his whole pose, and every line of the profile of his gracious face, expressive of unutterable sadness. Suddenly his lips began to twich into a smile, and his somber eyes lighted up with mirth.

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"The only schooling I ever had, Henderson,' he said, "was in a log schoolhouse when reading books and grammars were unknown. All our reading was done from the Scriptures, and we stood up in a long line and read in turn from the Bible. Our lesson one day was the story of the faithful Israelites who were thrown into the fiery furnace and delivered by the hand of the Lord without so much as the smell of fire upon their garments. It fell to one little fellow to read the verse in which occurred, for the first time, the names of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego.

Little Bud stumbled on Shadrach, floundered on Meshach, and went all to pieces on Abed-nego. Instantly the hand of the master dealt him a cuff on the side of the head and left him, wailing and blubbering, as the next boy in line took up the reading. But before the girl at the end of the line had done reading, he had subsided into

sniffles, and finally became quiet. His blunder and disgrace were forgotten by the class until his turn was approaching to read again. Then, like a thunder-clap out of a clear sky, he set up a wail that alarmed the master, who with rather unusual gentleness inquired, "What's the matter


The little boy pointed with shaking finger to the verse which in a few moments he would be expected to read, and to the three proper names which it contained,

"Look, marster," he cried, "there comes them same three fellers again!"

Lincoln's face lighted up with a smile as he told this story, and he beckoned Senator Henderson to his side, and silently pointed his finger at three men at that moment crossing from Pennsylvania Avenue over the White House lawn to the door of the Executive mansion. They were Charles Sumner, Henry Wilson and Thaddeus Stevens.

This is a good story, and well authenticated. It has its present value for us in the record it contains of the use of the Bible as a book for class instruction in the schools which Lincoln attended.

It seems probable, however, that near the

end of his schooling he used Lindley Murray's "English Reader," with its choice collection of prose and verse; for he told Herndon that he considered that volume the best schoolbook ever put into the hands of American youth. That opinion was justified. It was a great book.

At New Salem, Lincoln read law, and had his introduction to natural history, and to scientific subjects. Herndon relates that he read Rollin's Ancient History and Gibbon's Rome, but that he did not greatly enjoy history. I have several volumes once owned by him, and bearing the firm name of Lincoln and Herndon in his writing, one of them being "Ancient and Modern History" by J. E. Worcester.

Biography interested him, but he did not like to have men over-praised. In 1856 Herndon purchased a "Life of Burke." It may have been Sir James Prior's "Life," the fifth edition of which had just been published by Bohn; but Prof. Daniel Kilham Dodge, whose booklet on the evolution of Lincoln's literary style is of great value, opines that it was P. Burke's "Life of Burke," which was published in 1851, and which the Dictionary of National Biography characterizes as "utterly valueless."

Lincoln so regarded it. Herndon tells of it thus:

"In 1856 I purchased in New York a Life of Edmund Burke. I have forgotten who the author was. One morning Lincoln came into the office, and, seeing the book in my hands, enquired what I was reading. Taking it in his hands, he threw himself down on the office sofa, and hastily ran over its pages, reading a little here and there. At last he closed and threw it on the table with the exclamation, 'No, I've read enough of it. It's like all the others. Biographies as generally written are not only misleading, but false. The author of this Life of Burke makes a wonderful hero of his subject. He magnifies his perfections, if he had any, and suppresses his imperfections. He is so faithful in his zeal and so lavish in praise of his every act that one is almost driven to believe that Burke never made a mistake or a failure in his life. History is not history unless it is the truth."

It would appear that Lincoln was not interested in biography which was indiscriminate eulogy; but that he cared to read the lives of eminent men is certain. In his boyhood he appears to have read Weems' Life of Marion as well as that of Washington, and also to have

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