The Gettysburg Address
The Gettysburg Address
The Gettysburg Address took place on November 19, 1863, four months after the Battle of Gettysburg. The address was a dedication to the Gettysburg National Cemetery. The area was chosen for the cemetery because it was part of the main battlefield at Gettysburg, and the people of the town wanted to honor the dead of the battle.
Two people spoke at the cemetery, Abraham Lincoln and Edward Everett. The key speaker to the event was Edward Everett of Massachusetts, a Whig Party Politician. He gave a two hour formal speech that was about 13,600 words long.
Abraham Lincoln spoke after Everett. His speech was 2 minutes long with 272 words. The crowd at the cemetery was stunned that his speech was so short. Even though The Gettysburg Address was extremely short; it became Lincoln's most famous speech, and a major part of American history.
Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate -- we can not hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
Written by Kathrine Franklin
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