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Page:Samuel Scoville -Abraham Lincoln, His Story.djvu/62

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ABRAHAM LINCOLN: HIS STORY

Like Franklin, Lincoln possessed in an extraordinary degree the power of persuasion. Can anything be more appealing, more frank, more void of offense, than his appeal to the South in his First Inaugural Address?

Can aliens make treaties easier than friends can make laws? Can treaties be more faithfully enforced between aliens than laws can among friends? . . . I am loath to close. We are not enemies but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and hearth-stone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.

Like Franklin, too, Lincoln possessed the tact of a true statesman. The night of Lee's surrender at Appomattox there was a wild time in Washington. A band serenaded the President, playing various patriotic airs, such as "Columbia" and "The Star-Spangled Banner." When Lincoln was called upon to speak he turned to the bandmaster and said: "Play 'Dixie' now. It's ours again."

Another secret of Abraham Lincoln's strength as a speaker was the fact that he had saturated his mind with the two great masterpieces of English literature, the King James' Version of the Bible and Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress. Lincoln read and reread, again and again, both