Chapter

Lincoln and Leadership: An Introduction

Randall M. Miller

in Lincoln and Leadership

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print August 2012 | ISBN: 9780823243440
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780823243488 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5422/fordham/9780823243440.003.0001

Series: The North's Civil War (FUP)

Lincoln and Leadership: An Introduction

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This introductory chapter by Randall M. Miller provides an overview of Lincoln as a political, military, and moral leader during the Civil War and a brief assessment of the Lincoln myths related to his leadership as the saviour of the Union, the great emancipator, and friend of the common man. It argues that Lincoln kept the priority of the Union first in all his thinking and public policy, but moved toward ending slavery as a way to win the war and realize the promise of the Declaration of Independence. It also argues that Lincoln was an engaged leader of the Republican Party, conscious of shaping public opinion in speeches and images, maintaining ties with party leaders, and understanding the necessity of translating ideas into action. It also suggests he defined the role of Commander in Chief as he developed a modern strategy for winning the war and sought out generals who would effect his thinking. And it argues that Lincoln proved successful in managing the war effort, his party, and public opinion, though he was unsuccessful in laying out a clear policy for Reconstruction.

Keywords: Emancipation; Commander in chief; Republican Party; Public opinion; Union; Civil War; Reconstruction; Lincoln speeches; Lincoln mythology

Chapter.  14540 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of the Americas

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