11 Best Books About Abraham Lincoln Update 05/2022

Books about Honest Abe have been written around 15,000 times, but it doesn’t seem like there will ever be more to learn about him. Small wonder, given how important the 16th president was in American history and what he did while he was in office. No president has faced more turmoil than Abraham Lincoln, and his strong leadership and ability to communicate big ideas to a wide audience helped the Union win. This led to the end of slavery and the birth of the United States of America that we know today. Birth date: February 12, 1809. In the 1840s, Lincoln began his fight for political power. He came out of the shadows after a failed campaign to join the House of Representatives in 1843. In 1860, he was the Republican nominee for president and won. Lincoln became the country’s 16th president in one of the most tense political times in the country, when horse-trading and smoke-filled back rooms were common. The issue of slavery was threatening to split the country apart, which it did. Lincoln had to deal with unknown waters from the moment he took office. His unwavering confidence and strong will kept the country going when it was at its lowest point.

It was true that Abraham Lincoln was more than just a political figure. He was a very complicated person. He was a loving husband and father, a clever politician, a famous orator, and a tough-as-nails backwoodsman. There are many different ways that Lincoln’s personality is shown in the books on this list. Some of Lincoln’s less well-known, and maybe even unlikable, traits are also shown in these books. Lincoln’s presidency, reputation, stance on slavery, philosophical beliefs, literary works, and even his personal life are being looked at from new angles all the time. No president’s life, decisions, and actions have been given more attention or thought. With that in mind, here are some of the best books about Abraham Lincoln that are full of interesting facts and stories.

Mr. Lincoln’s Army By Bruce Catton

Bruce Catton was easily one of the greatest historians writing during the 20th century. Not only was he a Pulitzer Prize winner, but his work also resulted in the creation of the Bruce Catton Prize, given for lifetime achievement in history writing. Catton’s books also served as the basis for Ken Burns’ The Civil War documentary. 

Mr. Lincoln’s Army, the first volume in Catton’s series, The Potomac Trilogy, describes the history of the beginning years of the Civil War and Lincoln’s decision to choose George B. McClellan to lead the Union Army after the secession of the Southern States. Lincoln had a complicated relationship with McClellan, partially due to the general’s belief that Lincoln was not fit to be commander-in-chief. Catton’s focus on the military aspects of Lincoln’s presidency adds a crucial viewpoint to the study of his administration.

Lincoln Reconsidered By David Herbert Donald

When the author of Lincoln, a 1995 biography, wrote this collection of 12 essays about Lincoln’s legacy and reputation, it took a look at Lincoln’s legacy and reputation in a new way. It also tried to clear up some of the myths that have sometimes made our view of Lincoln more complicated. Donald tries to understand the complicated relationship between Abraham Lincoln and his law partner and biographer, William Herndon, as well as Lincoln’s wife, Mary, and how they all worked together. On top of that, Donald looks more deeply into the antislavery movement.

Bluff, Bluster, Lies and Spies By David Perry

Perry’s book is great for people who like foreign policy and people who like Lincoln. It shows how the Prime Minister’s decisions were influenced by how Great Britain and other European countries worked together during the Civil War. Lincoln had to be very strategic when he came up against the British. He knew that this could have a big impact on the Union or the Confederacy.

The Complete Papers and Writings of Abraham Lincoln By Abraham Lincoln

Instead of reading about Lincoln, why not go right to the source and find out for yourself? Lincoln wrote a lot as a lawyer, politician, and president from 1832 to 1865. These works show Lincoln as a writer, politician, and leader through his speeches, letters, and telegrams. They show Lincoln as a writer, politician, and leader. It’s a good idea to read this collection if you want to learn more about Lincoln’s history, military strategy, and personal thoughts.

Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln By Doris Kearns Goodwin

Goodwin, who won the Pulitzer Prize for history in 1995, is also the winner of the Lincoln Prize, which is given to people who do good research on Lincoln in English. Her book tells the amazing story of Lincoln’s journey to the presidency, how he beat his rivals, and why he was able to do so. It was Lincoln’s political skills and knowledge of people that helped him win the election and run a government that helped the Union win the Civil War, says Goodwin. Steven Spielberg used a lot of Goodwin’s book when he made Lincoln in 2012.

Emancipating Lincoln: The Proclamation in Text, Context, and Memory By Harold Holzer

Most people know Harold Holzer for his book, Lincoln and the Power of the Press, which won a lot of awards. He also won a lot of other awards for his work on Lincoln. However, we think you should try another one of his books. It looks at the Emancipation Proclamation, which is the single most important thing Lincoln ever did as president of the United States: it freed slaves. Holzer is able to put Lincoln in context by looking at sources that aren’t as well known as they should be and looking at how Americans have responded to the document. This helps Holzer figure out what Lincoln was trying to say and why.

Lincoln’s Body: A Cultural History By Richard Wightman Fox

Imagine Daniel Day-Lewis, who played Lincoln in the 2012 movie. If that’s what comes to mind when you think of Lincoln, this might be the book for you. Lincoln’s Body is a book written by a professor who teaches a class called “The World of Abraham Lincoln.” It looks at the cultural history of our tallest president, who was 6 feet 4 inches tall. Fox explains how Lincoln’s height and appearance played a role in how people thought of him, and how that helped him be successful, in this video.

Lincoln at Peoria: The Turning Point By Lewis E. Lehrman

Lehrman’s book focuses on a speech that Lincoln gave in Peoria, Illinois, on October 16, 1854. It was a very important speech. Lincoln’s speech is important because it focuses on the legal, economic, and most importantly, moral arguments against slavery. This is why it is so important for historians to debate Lincoln’s position on slavery. When Lehrman isn’t running businesses or being an economist or politician, he is also a historian who has written a lot of books about Lincoln. One of them, Lincoln & Churchill: Statesmen at War, came out in 2018. In 2005, President George W. Bush gave Lehrman a medal for the arts.

Lincoln: The Biography of a Writer By Fred Kaplan

In case you didn’t like the whole collection of Lincoln’s written works, this biography of Lincoln as a literary and philosophical figure should be enough for you to get what you need. Lincoln as a writer has been talked about a lot before. Edmund Wilson, one of the best literary critics of the 20th century, and Garry Wills, who wrote about the significance of the Gettysburg Address, are two examples. Kaplan shows the gravity of Lincoln’s language, as well as those who influenced him, from a new angle.

366 Days in Abraham Lincoln’s Presidency By Stephen A. Wynalda

Examine a year and a day in the life of the man many people think is the best president in the United States. From 1861-62, Lincoln signed the Homestead Act, made the first federal income tax, and had to deal with the tragic death of his 11-year-old son, Willie, who died of a heart attack. The best way to learn about Lincoln as a person is to look into some of his most private times.

Mr. Lincoln Goes to War By William Marvel

Was the Civil War pre-planned? She wrote Andersonville and Lincoln’s Autocrat, two books that have won awards. She looks at Abraham Lincoln’s first year in office, from when he was inaugurated until the secession crisis and the first few months of the war. How does Marvel do this? They look at history through a new lens, and they ask hard questions about the 16th president and come to conclusions that some people might find controversial. It’s said that Lincoln missed chances to avoid going to war, but also intentionally led the country into its worst war. I think this is the best example of history being changed.

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