President Abraham Lincoln

Abraham Lincoln was the 16th President of the United States of America. After George McClellan's retreat in the Peninsula Campaign, Lincoln lost confidence in his general and reassigned the major portion of the Army of the Potomac to John Pope's Army of the James, appointed Henry Halleck General-in-Chief in McClellan's place, and left McClellan as the commander of a much reduced-in-size Army of the Potamac. After Pope was soundly defeated at the Second Battle of Bull Run, in large part due to the timely arrival of James Longstreet's corps to reinforce Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson, Lincoln reluctantly gave the troops back to to McClellan saying, "We must work with the tools we have."

Because Robert E. Lee's army left the battlefield first, by the accepted practice at that time, the Union declared victory. This opening allowed Lincoln to announce his Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, freeing the slaves only in those states or regions of states that were in open rebellion on 1 January 1863. It also caused Great Britain to hold back its recognition of the Confederate States of America.

Lincoln, dissatisfied with what he believed to be McClellan's lack of will to take the offensive and pursue Lee into Virginia after the Battle of Antietam, sacked him for good and replaced him with Ambrose Burnside.

In 1864, McClellan was the Democrat's nominee to oppose Lincoln's reŽlection. In large part due to the "soldier vote," Lincoln won the election.


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Created 15 SEP 1999; Modified 24 JUL 2014

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