Abraham Lincoln Funeral Train Research Paper

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Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865) was the 16th President of the United States (1861-1865) and the first Republican to be voted into the office, having been elected during a period of rising inter-state tensions regarding the slavery issue in the nation. Lincoln successfully led the United States through the Civil War (1861-1865), which is considered one of the nation's central constitutional and moral crises, abolished slavery, increased the authority of the federal government, and later planned the reconstruction of the Southern Confederate States. On April 14, 1865, Abraham Lincoln also became the first President to be assassinated. He was shot while attending a performance of Our American Cousin at Ford's Theatre in Washington D.C., by John…show more content…
Stanton. The designs for the procession were produced to present the historical importance of the President to the country, assert his moral authority, and display him as a martyr and savior of the nation. The route and grandeur of Lincoln's Funeral Train were also designed to assert Republican ideals, reiterate American values, and promote national solidarity. To ensure the success of these plans and to guarantee the security of Lincoln's body the railways used by Lincoln's Funeral Train were placed under military control. Lincoln's Funeral Train travelled from Washington D.C. to Springfield Illinois, traversing over 1600 miles, and passing through over 400 communities in seven states, between April 21 to May 3, 1865. The train was limited in size to nine cars including one engine, six coaches for mourning government officials and relatives, one coach for the comfort of the honor guard, and one coach for Lincoln's funeral hearse. In addition, despite different locomotives being used en route, Lincoln's portrait was fastened to the front of each carriage. The Funeral Train was instructed to travel at limited speeds in order to avoid any accidents, and was proceeded by a separate locomotive, 10 minutes ahead to ensure that the track remained…show more content…
Instead, in both previous cases, the Presidents' bodies had briefly lain in state in the White House, and then were privately transported to their final places of rest. As such, while eight Presidents have died in office, it is the ceremony attributed to Lincoln's Funeral Train, immortalized by the national press and public sentiment of the period, which has shaped subsequent Presidential and national funerals. For example, in 1881 James A. Garfield (1831-1881) was escorted to Washington by an honour guard in an elaborate funeral car. Similarly, in 1901 William McKinley (1843-1901) was first taken to the capital by train, and then following the national services he was taken back to Canton Ohio by a funeral procession and train. In 1923, President Warren G. Harding's (1865-1923) body was also first brought to Washington D.C. and then later sent onwards for burial to Marion Ohio by Funeral Train. Similarly, in 1945 with the death of Franklin Delano Roosevelt (1882-1945) a train, the Ferdinand Magellan, first carried the President's body back to Washington to lie in state, and was then later used to transport his remains to Hyde Park, New York for burial. In a similar fashion, others who have passed while in office or afterwards,

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