Book Chat
Lincoln At Gettysburg
The Words That Remade America
By
Garry Wills

This chat took place in the Civil War Home Chatroom on 11/07/05 and covered the Prologue and Chapter 1

11/7/2005 9:03 pm (et) ks: Okay. Well then, I'd like to get started. I have to say this book is taking me by surprise. I *thought* I knew what to expect. I was wrong. ;) I'd definitely like to stay within the confines of the assigned reading. And that said, I've got some questions...

11/7/2005 9:04 pm (et) ks:

Prologue
Business in Gettysburg

What do you think Wills was trying to do in the prologue? Did he succeed?

11/7/2005 9:04 pm (et) amhistoryguy: With Lincoln so often presenting a conciliatory tone towards the South, Wills opening characterization of "Southern fools," was, IMO, a cheap shot that added nothing.

11/7/2005 9:05 pm (et) ks: In other words...please share your thoughts on that prologue. Didn't read quite like what I'd expected at all.

11/7/2005 9:06 pm (et) Basecat: What I liked about the prologue was that he did set the stage very well for day, and his details about where all stayed and what they did in town easily formed photos in the memory banks here.

11/7/2005 9:06 pm (et) amhistoryguy: I think he was trying to set the stage that led to the cemetery dedication. I thought he did that, in a way.

11/7/2005 9:06 pm (et) ks: That comment surprised me as well, AHG. Thought there must have been a better way to say that romanticism was very much present in the way people viewed the day.

11/7/2005 9:07 pm (et) mobile_96: Southern romantics would have worked I think

11/7/2005 9:08 pm (et) amhistoryguy: I was kind of at a loss as for why he made that comment, and in fact until you mentioned that that was what he was trying to say, I missed it.

11/7/2005 9:08 pm (et) Basecat: Agreed here as well, as a better word could have been used...especially from a gifted writer as he is. Hard to believe that would be in the book at all...When I think of using the word fool, I automatically think of...never mind today is Monday..:)

11/7/2005 9:08 pm (et) amhistoryguy: The "fools" was a judgment made that I objected to.

11/7/2005 9:08 pm (et) Babs: I thought he gave good background on Everett. I knew he was a famous orator of the time but did not know that he had spoken at several battlefields before.

11/7/2005 9:09 pm (et) ks: Had any of you thought about the Gettysburg Address having such a purpose as to be "transforming reality into something rich and strange...with 272 words"?? I was very impressed with that section of explanation.

11/7/2005 9:09 pm (et) mobile_96: Or had studied in Europe.

11/7/2005 9:09 pm (et) Basecat: Babs....Only politician I know who ran for office, just so he could give long speeches on past events..:)

11/7/2005 9:09 pm (et) CWgal: I think he was quoting from quoting from Edwin Coddington, "The Gettysburg Campaign: A Study in Command."

11/7/2005 9:10 pm (et) amhistoryguy: yeah, I at first thought that perhaps Wills was quoting from Coddington as well, CWgal, I checked and it was not a quote, but the description of the men cheering.

11/7/2005 9:11 pm (et) CWgal: Oh, I see AHG.

11/7/2005 9:11 pm (et) Basecat: ks...what I liked about how he framed that, was just how much thought Abe obviously put into those 272 words...and glad he put down the myths that are connected with how he wrote the speech.

11/7/2005 9:11 pm (et) Babs: Base, Right. Most give long speeches and say nothing at all.

11/7/2005 9:11 pm (et) mobile_96: Right, "enthusiastic cheers".

11/7/2005 9:11 pm (et) amhistoryguy: Amazing how many myths came from the event Basecat.

11/7/2005 9:11 pm (et) ks: You're right, CWgal. According to the footnotes, that text WAS taken from Coddington. That surprised me as well. Of course I've never read a word of Coddington unless it's been a quote lifted like this.

11/7/2005 9:12 pm (et) Basecat: Babs...Glad you got what I was trying to say...as after I typed that...just didn't convey what I meant the best way.

11/7/2005 9:12 pm (et) ks: AHG, wow...that's misleading then, isn't it? Thank you for checking further on the statement!

11/7/2005 9:13 pm (et) Babs: Both Everett and Lincoln put in a lot of preparation. I like the image of Everett showing Lincoln a copy of his speech so they wouldn't be embarrassed by duplication.

11/7/2005 9:13 pm (et) Basecat: amhg...You would think the speech would stand on its own, but they had to drum up dramatic tales and special effects to make it more important.

11/7/2005 9:13 pm (et) amhistoryguy: It was kind of misleading, that's why I checked.

11/7/2005 9:13 pm (et) ks: Basecat, I'm glad you mentioned that. As I read I too was struck by how many GA myths he was working to dispel.

11/7/2005 9:14 pm (et) amhistoryguy: Like the media today, even then folks sought to get a different angle, even to myth making.

11/7/2005 9:14 pm (et) Basecat: Babs...and the other thing I never knew...only reason why that date was chosen, was because that's when Everett said he would be ready.

11/7/2005 9:14 pm (et) ks: To make it more important or to make THEMSELVES more important. :) Some of those myths are associated with "I was there..."

11/7/2005 9:15 pm (et) amhistoryguy: Exactly ks

11/7/2005 9:15 pm (et) mobile_96: Have to remember that Everett was giving the only speech, Lincoln was only saying a few dedicatory remarks.

11/7/2005 9:15 pm (et) amhistoryguy: Great trivia question in there too - "How many women can safely occupy a Civil War era bed?

11/7/2005 9:16 pm (et) Basecat: Mobile...exactly, and glad the original programs wording was including as to just what was to take place.

11/7/2005 9:16 pm (et) Basecat: It is not 3...that's for sure..:)

11/7/2005 9:16 pm (et) amhistoryguy: No more than two.

11/7/2005 9:16 pm (et) ks: Until this reading I was unaware of the "principal wordsmiths" of the time that turned down the opportunity to speak---Longfellow, Whittier, Bryant...

11/7/2005 9:16 pm (et) Babs: Base, and the postponement worried those burying the dead. i.e. would the weather be too bad. These behind the scenes logistics and practical matters are interesting.

11/7/2005 9:16 pm (et) mobile_96: Bothing was said about bed, ......or women....size either.

11/7/2005 9:17 pm (et) amhistoryguy: The descriptions of the sleeping arrangements gave great flavor to the night before.

11/7/2005 9:17 pm (et) CWgal: I was wondering if the stench was still present at that time?

11/7/2005 9:17 pm (et) ks: lol That bit on the bed breaking was humorous.

11/7/2005 9:18 pm (et) Basecat: Babs...Just from my experience going to Remembrance Day, weather is always different from year to year...One time I attended it was 80 degrees, and just last year about froze my rear off.

11/7/2005 9:18 pm (et) amhistoryguy: I wish there was a better account of Abraham Lincoln's battlefield tour.

11/7/2005 9:18 pm (et) Basecat: Gal..It must have still been around.

11/7/2005 9:18 pm (et) Babs: CW, I think so.

11/7/2005 9:19 pm (et) ks: Babs, those behind the scenes details and logistics bring it all to life. The Gettysburg Address HAS been (to me) something memorized long ago and again more recently as I helped my kids learn it. It's importance is growing dramatically with the years (and the turning of these pages). ;)

11/7/2005 9:19 pm (et) Babs: ahg, I too would like to know what Lincoln saw.

11/7/2005 9:19 pm (et) Basecat: amhg...As far as I know from reading about his tour...Mostly he spent time looking over the area where Pickett's Charge took place on Day 3...Have also read that he was taken to Culp's Hill as well.

11/7/2005 9:19 pm (et) amhistoryguy: With people describing the "give" to the ground, the battlefield stench had to still be there.

11/7/2005 9:20 pm (et) Babs: There was reference to Lincoln's speech purifying the air.

11/7/2005 9:20 pm (et) CWgal: I suppose there were still unburied bodies still on the field? I know when Grant visited Chickamauga months later, there were.

11/7/2005 9:21 pm (et) ks: I have one of those CW era custom questions...what is a mourning band? Lincoln was said to have been wearing one on his hat for his dead son. I understand the WHY of it, what technically was it??

11/7/2005 9:21 pm (et) ks: Urgh, yes, the description of the "give" of the ground was graphic.

11/7/2005 9:21 pm (et) Babs: CW, The book says that Everett was shown some bodies.

11/7/2005 9:21 pm (et) Basecat: Gal...That and the fact they were disinterring all of the graves on the field, to figure out whether North and South for the cemetery.

11/7/2005 9:21 pm (et) CWgal: I am thinking it was a simple black band or ribbon.

11/7/2005 9:22 pm (et) mobile_96: Band usually worn around your arm.

11/7/2005 9:22 pm (et) amhistoryguy: I think it is mentioned that one tour for VIPS took the tour to Devil Den and showed them unburied Confederates.

11/7/2005 9:22 pm (et) Basecat: Black band around his Hat ks...Akin to what happens when say a famous player on the Yankees passes away, they add a black band to the left sleeve of the uniform.

11/7/2005 9:22 pm (et) CWgal: I thought I read that AHG, but wasn't sure it was this book.

11/7/2005 9:23 pm (et) Basecat: amhg...IIRC, that was Everett who was taken up that way the day before the event.

11/7/2005 9:24 pm (et) Basecat: Great point is also made into what was going on in Abe's life at this time...Willie had just died, and Tad was very sick at the time, but even with that going on his life, Abe knew how important it was for him to go to Gettysburg.

11/7/2005 9:24 pm (et) Babs: Speech Lincoln gave the night before seemed very Twain-like.

11/7/2005 9:25 pm (et) amhistoryguy: Interesting that even when a name was known, if the state was not known, the individual was labeled an "unknown."

11/7/2005 9:25 pm (et) ks: The log is zipping by and I don't recall who mentioned the disinfecting of the air. I'm just glad you did. ;) Wills pointed out that Lincoln far surpassed David Wills's hope for WORDS to disinfect the air of Gettysburg. Found the idea of being engaged in a battle for interpreting Gettysburg and even "win" the war, the whole CW, in ideological terms as well as military just fascinating.

11/7/2005 9:25 pm (et) Babs: Better to keep one's mouth shut than to open it and look the fool.

11/7/2005 9:25 pm (et) amhistoryguy: Exactly what I thought when I read that Babs - very quaint and Twain like.

11/7/2005 9:26 pm (et) ks: I was really glad to have the source for that quote, Babs. One of my brothers (the typically SILENT brother) often uses it. ;)

11/7/2005 9:26 pm (et) Basecat: Babs...and very typical Abe...He was very serious about speeches...and would not deliver one if he had not prepared for it...and at those times, he opted for humor..:)

11/7/2005 9:27 pm (et) amhistoryguy: And I think folks were satisfied with that.

11/7/2005 9:27 pm (et) Basecat: amhg...what I liked about that passage...even included what a heckler said in the crowd..;)

11/7/2005 9:27 pm (et) Basecat: Good natured Heckler, I should add.

11/7/2005 9:28 pm (et) ks: Any thoughts on the text for pages 38-39 where Wills speaks of Lincoln "subverting the Constitution at Gettysburg"?

11/7/2005 9:28 pm (et) CWgal: It was noted also that this was not a Federal responsibility since it was a state activity. But, Lincoln saw this as a classic situation for political fence-mending and intelligence gathering.

11/7/2005 9:28 pm (et) amhistoryguy: And Lincoln took it good naturedly as well.

11/7/2005 9:28 pm (et) Babs: Poor Everett was afraid to sleep lest the Governor might jump into bed with him. It might be interesting to read Everett's diary.

11/7/2005 9:29 pm (et) mobile_96: Was thinking the same thing Babs.

11/7/2005 9:29 pm (et) Basecat: ks...Just my opinion, while Abe had a deep respect for the Constitution, he even had a deeper one for the Declaration, and used that in the speech to invoke the founding fathers.

11/7/2005 9:29 pm (et) ks: Labeling the address as a "giant (if benign) swindle" amazed me. And I know I'm using words that imply a lot of what I read today left me in awe. That's accurate. ;)

11/7/2005 9:30 pm (et) CWgal: LOL I enjoyed that as well Babs. I think all this bunk about Lincoln being gay is a prime example of people seeing that era thru 21st century eyes and plain ignorance. Sleeping more than one to a bed was very common up until just a few decades ago.

11/7/2005 9:30 pm (et) Basecat: My hats off to Everett, as am most impressed he could speak as long as he did, when he had that "condition" of his...:)

11/7/2005 9:31 pm (et) amhistoryguy: With Everett's kidney problems, perhaps it was the governor who was lucky he did not jump into bed with Everett

11/7/2005 9:31 pm (et) Babs: Yes, Three hours without using his porta-a-tent was quite a while.

11/7/2005 9:31 pm (et) CWgal: LOL

11/7/2005 9:31 pm (et) Basecat: ks...Swindle was a harsh way at looking at the speech, and IIRC, that came from a Chicago paper, which is kinda surprising.

11/7/2005 9:32 pm (et) ks: I'd never previously considered the Gettysburg Address as being something "revolutionized the Revolution" or "assaulted the constitutional past". I guess my saying that only further underlines what an incredible job Lincoln did with the address.

11/7/2005 9:33 pm (et) ks: I'd not previously considered that values were created by the Gettysburg Address. Had others of you??

11/7/2005 9:33 pm (et) Basecat: ks...and further illustrates just how much thought he put into the speech...and crushes the myth that it was written on the back of an envelope, IMHO.

11/7/2005 9:34 pm (et) mobile_96: Nor I KS.

11/7/2005 9:34 pm (et) amhistoryguy: I had not ks.

11/7/2005 9:35 pm (et) Vickie: At the museum in Springfield there is one of the speech in Lincoln's handwriting.  Its the one given to Everett.

11/7/2005 9:36 pm (et) ks: Okay, you'd not considered that. Then, given what you've read for tonight, might you AGREE that it created values?? ;)

11/7/2005 9:37 pm (et) Basecat: Changed what folks at that time thought of the CW IMHO...gave it the meaning as to why it was being fought.

11/7/2005 9:38 pm (et) amhistoryguy: Or perhaps established standards that led to new values.

11/7/2005 9:39 pm (et) Basecat: Will just add, what this speech did, seems to me anyway to set in his mind what he said at his 2nd Inaugural address, which to me is an even greater speech.

11/7/2005 9:39 pm (et) Babs: I have always thought that the GA restated the values of the Declaration. I will have to ponder if I should change my thoughts.

11/7/2005 9:39 pm (et) mobile_96: Think that can be better answered as we get further into the book.

11/7/2005 9:40 pm (et) Babs: I wish Bluelady were here. I know she has given it lots of thought.

11/7/2005 9:40 pm (et) ks: And while you're cogitating there, I'd like to share a story. Some years ago I was in DC with my husband and children and we went to the Lincoln Memorial. Swarms of tourists crawling all over the place. I was in the section where the Gettysburg Address is engraved in the wall and there entered a group of tourist who to my ear sounded Russian. One of the group stepped in front of us all and recited from memory and with visible emotion the entire Gettysburg Address. I remember feeling surprised at that moment that it obviously meant SO much to "those people"....which started my reflection of what it meant to me and what I might be missing. Really incredible moment in time for me.

11/7/2005 9:41 pm (et) Babs: Good point, Mobile. We are not done yet.

11/7/2005 9:42 pm (et) mobile_96: I think Will is setting up the ground work to show us how it changes thoughts

11/7/2005 9:42 pm (et) CWgal: I was unaware that Lincoln had such a high pitched voice. I guess I watch too much Hollywood.

11/7/2005 9:42 pm (et) amhistoryguy: I agree that it is too early to make that determination.

11/7/2005 9:42 pm (et) Basecat: ks...Makes me wonder just how much we take for granted here in the US, and those who come from places where they did not have the freedom we have here means more to them.

11/7/2005 9:43 pm (et) Vickie: Yes CW that high pitched voice thing surprised me too.

11/7/2005 9:43 pm (et) ks: And he did a good job of that, mobile. When I got fullly into Chapter One, my thoughts were definitely changing. ;) Be we ready for Chapter One?

11/7/2005 9:43 pm (et) amhistoryguy: Great story ks, and really thought provoking.

11/7/2005 9:43 pm (et) mobile_96: KS, I think that's a problem with most of the 'natural born' here, we appreciate our being here, less than the new comers.

11/7/2005 9:45 pm (et) ks: I'm reading "Toga, Toga, Toga!!" on instant messenger. Someone's subtle *cough, cough* way to tell me to move on. ;)
Okay....
Chapter 1
Oratory of the Greek Revival

Time to speak some Greek with relation to the Gettysburg Address. Wow...WOW.

11/7/2005 9:45 pm (et) Babs: Chapter one was one of those "read it. It's good for you" chapters. Broccoli.

11/7/2005 9:45 pm (et) amhistoryguy: Chapter One was Greek to me.

11/7/2005 9:45 pm (et) mobile_96: I really had to struggle thru Chapter 1 as my studies of ancient history are truly ancient in memory

11/7/2005 9:45 pm (et) Vickie: That chapter made absolutely no sense to me.

11/7/2005 9:46 pm (et) Vickie: I was thinking the whole time I hope the rest of the book isn't like this.

11/7/2005 9:46 pm (et) Basecat: Mobile...same here, and often found myself rereading various paragraphs.

11/7/2005 9:46 pm (et) CWgal: I am so glad I wasn't the only one that had a problem with Chapter 1.

11/7/2005 9:46 pm (et) ks: I didn't know BEANS about Greek studies or funeral oratory. And I began Chapter One struggling as well. But at some point the light went on and I began to feel that "I GET it."

11/7/2005 9:46 pm (et) CWgal: I kept thinking..."what is the point of this" I am hoping it ties in somewhere.

11/7/2005 9:46 pm (et) Vickie: LOL no light here.

11/7/2005 9:46 pm (et) Babs: Again I think think is establishing background for both speeches (L and E's). I think they were both much more familiar with those Greeks than we are.

11/7/2005 9:47 pm (et) mobile_96: Same here KS.

11/7/2005 9:47 pm (et) Vickie: Could have established that background a bit simpler maybe.

11/7/2005 9:48 pm (et) amhistoryguy: I thought Wills was perhaps over analyzing.

11/7/2005 9:48 pm (et) ks: All of the build up with Everett's background and why HE was the right person to speak at the event was appreciated. And Babs...BINGO! I was SO struck with a sense of how people must have been more consumed with classical study. All of that info on the Greek Revival in architecture...that's something I would never have given thought.

11/7/2005 9:48 pm (et) Babs: I think it is just showing that Lincoln was following a traditional funeral formulation established waaaay back.

11/7/2005 9:48 pm (et) mobile_96: Breaking the speech down and showing it in sections as per the old tributes brought it all together

11/7/2005 9:49 pm (et) Basecat: Reminded me of Humanities classes when I was a Senior in HS, and said to my Prof...When am I ever gonna need this knowledge, and he said you will...and he was correct...albeit 24 years later..:)

11/7/2005 9:49 pm (et) mobile_96: Right KS, have to remember all the debates common back then, and not all on politics, both N & S

11/7/2005 9:49 pm (et) Vickie: A whole chapter of gobbly gook just to say Lincoln followed traditional funeral.

11/7/2005 9:49 pm (et) amhistoryguy: But, I think the chapter clearly shows that Lincoln was not "ordinary" or a "gorilla," or even the bumpkin he is sometimes portrayed as.

11/7/2005 9:49 pm (et) ks: Yes, it did just that, mobile. Like others have said, it was a struggle to read this chapter. But that breakdown is where the light went on for me. And after reading it, I re-read it and got more excited with every read.

11/7/2005 9:50 pm (et) mobile_96: Remember reading comments on debates on Darwin in the ranks.

11/7/2005 9:50 pm (et) Basecat: Mobile...Exactly, and was very helpful the way he outlined the speech using how the Greeks made their speeches.

11/7/2005 9:50 pm (et) Babs: KS, The architecture points surprised me as well. I had just thought moving to Greek Revival was a fad because they iked it. I never thought it might have a connection to politics.

11/7/2005 9:51 pm (et) Vickie: That outline was the only thing I found of interest or understood.

11/7/2005 9:51 pm (et) amhistoryguy: Could not Lincoln have used this form without a knowledge of Greek form?

11/7/2005 9:51 pm (et) Basecat: Now if he did that with Everett's speech...I'd still be reading the homework..:)

11/7/2005 9:51 pm (et) ks: Everett obviously also did an inspired job with what HE said. And it's so amazing to me to realize that when we learned about the Gettysburg Address in school, his version is never even mentioned. I loved that Wills tells us how Everett "aspired to more than mere accuracy....he meant to create a tradition that would inspire as well as inform."

11/7/2005 9:52 pm (et) mobile_96: Would take to end of the year to finish Everett's.

11/7/2005 9:52 pm (et) Basecat: amhg...Don't think that even came across his mind when he wrote it...and even Will's said he did not have the time to think it that far through, what with all he was involved in.

11/7/2005 9:52 pm (et) ks: Not sure I know what you mean there, AHG. ?? You mean he might have intuitively known the Greek form? His finished product certainly seems to reflect a knowledge of that "greek form".

11/7/2005 9:53 pm (et) mobile_96: I'm wondering about that Base, Lincoln was well versed in many topics, not just lawyering

11/7/2005 9:53 pm (et) ks: LOL And that's an optimistic assessment IMO, mo-beel. End of the year or end of a lifetime?? ;)

11/7/2005 9:53 pm (et) Basecat: ks...as a well known Gettysburg aficionado...suprises me quite a bit that most historians of that battle do not spend any time on his speech, as he seems to have prepared it using quite a bit of help from after battle reports etc.

11/7/2005 9:54 pm (et) mobile_96: Maybe he didn't 'write' in that format, but knowledge of it certainly came out in his presentation.

11/7/2005 9:54 pm (et) Babs: amhg and Base, I think he was influenced by it. Whether he purposely match point for point, maybe not, but I think he was well-read enough to have absorbed it.

11/7/2005 9:54 pm (et) Basecat: Mobile...That he was, just don't think he ...what Babs said.

11/7/2005 9:54 pm (et) mobile_96: Right on Babs.

11/7/2005 9:54 pm (et) ks: Wasn't that a surprise, Basecat? To read that Everett received communications from Meade, Halleck and others in order to prepare his address!

11/7/2005 9:55 pm (et) Basecat: Thanks babs...:)

11/7/2005 9:55 pm (et) amhistoryguy: I find it very hard to see Lincoln sitting down to use Greek form in a speech. I find it more believable that he had a general idea of the points he wanted to get across and went with it.

11/7/2005 9:55 pm (et) Basecat: ks...shows that he did his homework...and how he could wrap an audience around his fingers when he talked.

11/7/2005 9:55 pm (et) mobile_96: Its funny actually, I really bought this book originally just for Everett's speech.

11/7/2005 9:56 pm (et) Basecat: Because he did that homework...I should add.

11/7/2005 9:56 pm (et) CWgal: AHG was that just a "standard" for speech writing in those days?

11/7/2005 9:56 pm (et) amhistoryguy: Has Lincoln every made reference to the Greeks in other speeches?

11/7/2005 9:56 pm (et) ks: So I bet you all aren't keen on a discussion of the logoslergon, dikainon, progonoi, autochthones, paideia, etc.?? ;) Who yelled "Bring on the GYROS!!"? ;)

11/7/2005 9:56 pm (et) amhistoryguy: Lets diagram sentences

11/7/2005 9:57 pm (et) amhistoryguy: in Greek

11/7/2005 9:57 pm (et) Basecat: Same Guy who made the Toga Reference...Will tell Moose to be quiet here.:)

11/7/2005 9:57 pm (et) ks: Made reference to the Greeks? I don't know. But other speeches of his do seem to exhibit knowledge ("absorbtion" did Babs say?) of the style.

11/7/2005 9:58 pm (et) Babs: I always thought diagramming sentences was fun. Skylark would understand.

11/7/2005 9:58 pm (et) Basecat: I really think he used many styles to get his message across, and was very adept at doing so.

11/7/2005 9:58 pm (et) amhistoryguy: I guess I could see that, absorbtion of a style.

11/7/2005 9:59 pm (et) ks: So given your propensity to enjoy diagramming sentences (so did I btw), how'd you take to the Greek breakdown of the address, Babs? Amazed and thrilled me.

11/7/2005 9:59 pm (et) Babs: Base, I agree. He was adept at adapting. Twain at night. Pericles by day.

11/7/2005 10:00 pm (et) amhistoryguy: I would doubt that Lincoln could have provided the Greek breakdown of his speech as Wills did.

11/7/2005 10:00 pm (et) CWgal: Must be a girl thing. I like diagramming sentences too :D

11/7/2005 10:00 pm (et) Basecat: Babs...Was just in the process of typing the same thing...and that's the way he was for the most part during the war.

11/7/2005 10:01 pm (et) amhistoryguy: I'd rather blow something up.

11/7/2005 10:01 pm (et) ks: I agree with you there, AHG. But I also agree with Wills when he stated that it's astonishing that Lincoln's speech arrived at so similar a vision, a coordinated vision.

11/7/2005 10:02 pm (et) Basecat: IIRC..think I did..and why I did not do well at diagramming sentences..:)

11/7/2005 10:02 pm (et) ks: LOL! And maybe that's why you do so well with FFF, amhistoryguy. I'd rather be off diagramming a sentence. ;)

11/7/2005 10:03 pm (et) Babs: I thought it was an amazing comparison and the cynic in me wondered if Lincoln had used the form or if Will's form it it.

11/7/2005 10:03 pm (et) amhistoryguy: That I would agree with ks, it is amazing that the speech hit all those fine points. It does show Lincoln as an extraordinary individual.

11/7/2005 10:03 pm (et) amhistoryguy: That's what I thought Babs.

11/7/2005 10:04 pm (et) ks: Other thoughts on Chapter One? Life-IN-death made life-THROUGH-death so that the miraculous birth from this continent leads to a miraculous not-quite-death in the prehallowed ground where the heroes rest...

11/7/2005 10:04 pm (et) Babs: I thought that as I read it. Now these FFF folks know how we feel reading about enfusalading (sp?)

11/7/2005 10:04 pm (et) Basecat: Just a point here, and why I think Abe is special in terms of the Presidents...Some are known for maybe one speech...Not many are known for multiple speeches such as came from the pen of Mr. Lincoln.

11/7/2005 10:05 pm (et) mobile_96: And no ghost writers like today.

11/7/2005 10:05 pm (et) amhistoryguy: Gettysburg was really a course correction in American History, well after a battle was fought there.

11/7/2005 10:06 pm (et) ks: Enfusalading with GREEK dressing? ;)

11/7/2005 10:06 pm (et) CWgal: just what I was about to say mobile

11/7/2005 10:06 pm (et) amhistoryguy: And Ouzo

11/7/2005 10:08 pm (et) ks: Please do continue with thoughts on this week's reading, but I'll share the reading assignment for next week. :) The thought of more GREEK doesn't intimidate me as much as the thought of the Transcendentalists, but I'll continue to be open to both. Chapters 2 and 3.

11/7/2005 10:09 pm (et) Babs: amhg, I like the phrase "course correction" better than an "assault on the Constitution".

11/7/2005 10:09 pm (et) ks: Checking to see if I've lost a post, or it's just tucked out of range...

11/7/2005 10:10 pm (et) Basecat: What I like about this book...62 pages in and just got absorbed in the topic...and was wide awake, and did not nap once while doing so....That's what makes a fine book, IMHO Mr. Leslie..;)

11/7/2005 10:11 pm (et) mobile_96: Almost wish we were doing 2-3 tomorrow night, just to continue the reading.

11/7/2005 10:11 pm (et) Basecat: Was also thinking I wish all could come to Gettysburg for a Remembrance Day weekend, as it really is something to be in that town to celebrate those 272 words.

11/7/2005 10:12 pm (et) amhistoryguy: While I was reading, I was struck by the realization that one of the great accomplishments of the Battle of Gettysburg, was the Gettysburg Address.

11/7/2005 10:12 pm (et) Babs: Mobile, That is a sign of a fine book.

11/7/2005 10:12 pm (et) Vickie: Oh good I'm ahead already.   Went on to 2.Started when we were traveling and wasn't sure how far to read :-)

11/7/2005 10:13 pm (et) ks: So true, AHG. That Address is a national treasure.

11/7/2005 10:13 pm (et) Babs: Hmmm. Who won the Battle of Gettysburg? Perhaps Lincoln.

11/7/2005 10:13 pm (et) mobile_96: I want to, but trying to finish another book tomorrow, and started one on secession convention in Georgia.

11/7/2005 10:13 pm (et) Basecat: amhg...What the speech did, is put closure on what occurred, and from that day on, there was a new birth of Freedom.

11/7/2005 10:13 pm (et) Skylark: KS I was moved by your encounter with the Russian tour group

11/7/2005 10:13 pm (et) Vickie: Base now that Iv found the Granite Hill campground is open in Nov. and they have camping cabins we are going to try to plan on a Nov. Gettysburg trip in the future.

11/7/2005 10:15 pm (et) Basecat: Vickie...Really is a special weekend...and am lucky I live close by, so I can attend it every year.

11/7/2005 10:15 pm (et) ks: I suspect some people might need to depart. If so I want to say THANK you for participating in this book discussion. I think this is a special read. Basecat, NOT being at Gettysburg on Remembrance Day will be more difficult this year because of this read. Some day I will make it.

11/7/2005 10:15 pm (et) ks: Skylark, it definitely was an unexpected lump in the throat moment. Also a moment I was so glad to share with my kids. You could see the wheels a turning. ;)

11/7/2005 10:16 pm (et) Skylark: How wonderful that they had that opportunity as well as the sensitivity to grasp the implications.

11/7/2005 10:16 pm (et) ks: Babs, just caught your comment about Lincoln perhaps winning the battle. Lots of truth in that statement, isn't there? :)

11/7/2005 10:17 pm (et) amhistoryguy: Something I'm sure your kids will describe to their kids ks.

11/7/2005 10:17 pm (et) Basecat: ks...Been to that place so many times, but that weekend is extra special...and the luminaires in the Cemetery is something to see as well.

11/7/2005 10:17 pm (et) ks: I don't know if it was so much sensitivity as puzzlement. A kind of a "why would THIS mean so much to THEM"?

11/7/2005 10:18 pm (et) Skylark: But it sparked their interest?

11/7/2005 10:19 pm (et) amhistoryguy: Anyone going to Gettysburg for Remembrance Day should remember no more than two to a bed !!!

11/7/2005 10:19 pm (et) CWgal: LOL AHG

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GO TO CHAT FOR CHAPTERS 2 & 3