Abraham Lincoln was born on February 12, 1809, in a log cabin in Hardin County, Kentucky.

Lincoln's childhood was not an easy one. His mother died when he was only nine years old. The family moved Indiana, and his father married Sarah Bush Johnston Lincoln, a widow with two girls and a boy of her own. She became especially fond of Abraham, and he of her.The family moved once more, settling Illinois. Lincoln who was now in his early 20s, started splitting rails and clearing his father's farm. Eventually he enlisted, as a volunteer, in the Black Hawk War (a fight to move the Indians westward). Lincoln worked on a riverboat, an ran a general store, was a postmaster, and surveyor, before deciding to study to be become a lawyer. 

Abraham Lincoln's Youth 
"Abraham Lincoln
his hand and pen
he will be good but
[God] knows When"

These are the words Lincoln wrote in his schoolbook when he was a young boy. In his autobiography, Lincoln estimated that his time in school totaled one year. His teachers in the pioneer schools in Indiana didn't have any arithmetic textbooks, so Lincoln found some paper, which was hard to come by, tied it together, and created his own "sum book."

CREDIT: Lincoln, Abraham. "Page of Abraham Lincoln's student sum book, ca. 1824-26. (Herndon-Weik Collection of Lincolniana)." Words and Deeds in American History: Selected Documents Celebrating the Manuscript Division's First 100 Years, Library of Congress. 




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