This Day in History – March 4

On March 4th, 1861, Abraham Lincoln was inaugurated as the 16th President of the United States. The country was on the eve of civil war, and on his way to his inauguration, Lincoln evaded possible assassins in Baltimore, Maryland, arriving in disguise in Washington, D.C., on February 23rd. At the inauguration ceremony, the German-American Turners, a gymnastics club, formed Lincoln’s bodyguard, and a large number of federal troops were also present, ready to protect the nation’s capital and the new President from a Confederate invasion or local insurrection. In his address, Lincoln declared the importance of holding the Union together. He believed that a peaceful solution was still possible, and decided to not take any action against the South unless the Union itself was attacked first; this finally happened in April 1861 and the Civil War was begun. abraham_lincoln_head_on_shoulders_photo_portrait

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