Were Lincoln's last words," The South did not do it."?

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GS

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If this was truly a statement by Lincoln, I believe the "it", which Lincoln was referring to, was the War. He of all men knew the truth, the "why" and "how" the War began.
 
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WJC

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I have never heard or seen this claim before. For a century after his death, students were taught that Lincoln did not blame the South for the rebellion, that he wanted to restore the nation as it existed in 1860. Given that atmosphere, it seems this claim would have received greater mention.
I believe it is pure fiction.
 

Waterloo50

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Whether Lincoln said that or not is in some respects irrelevant, maybe the article was intended to heal old divisions, just a positive comment to help unify people. I read the article as a positive.
 

WJC

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Whether Lincoln said that or not is in some respects irrelevant, maybe the article was intended to heal old divisions, just a positive comment to help unify people. I read the article as a positive.
Sort of 'good' propaganda? I prefer facts, not 'warm, fuzzy' fiction....
 
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Stiles/Akin

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I believe the source for that is Dr. Anson G. Henry. Dr. Henry was a close friend of the Lincolns, and he helped comfort Mary during the weeks she remained in the White House following the assassination. On April 19, 1865, Dr. Henry wrote his wife a letter which contained the last words of Abraham Lincoln as told to him by Mary. Because of the close proximity of the dates of the assassination and this letter, I think most historians feel Dr. Henry's account is the most reliable when it comes to those last words.

Here is part of the letter Dr. Henry wrote to his wife on April 19, 1865:

"She set close to him and was leaning on his lap looking up in his face when the fatal shot was fired, his last words being in answer to her question "What will Miss Harris think of my hanging on to you so" — "She won't think anything about it" — and said accompanied with one of his kind and affectionate smiles. Yes, that look & expression is stamped upon her soul too indelibly to ever be effaced by time, and its recollection will never fail to soothe and comfort her in her hours of darkest affliction. God in his mercy will sanctify this personal and National affliction for great good, and this is my greatest and almost only consolation under the terrible bereavement."

http://rogerjnorton.com/LincolnDiscussionSymposium/thread-1858.html
 

Waterloo50

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Sort of 'good' propaganda? I prefer facts, not 'warm, fuzzy' fiction....
Yep, ‘good’ propaganda and there’s nothing wrong with that, keep in mind that you have to look at things in the context of time, it was written at the time of the Great Depression, lots of poverty, lots of political divide and a nation struggling to rebuild itself. Anything that helps to heal, has to be a good thing, right!
 
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Rusk County Avengers

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Its a poignant statement to be sure. But after having a .44 caliber ball shot into the back of his skull I don't think Lincoln was able to even think it much less say it!

But considering the era I'll give the paper credit for being nice to Lincoln's memory, even if it ignores all probability and biology. But have no fear it'll appear as fact one day in some book.
 

Mint Julep

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If you keep making jokes like that, somebody is going to shoot you, father. ~ Mary Todd Lincoln
 
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