Hundreds of additional titles available for
online reading when you join Gateway to the Classics
THE COURAGE OF HIS CONVICTIONS
MR. LINCOLN made the great speech of his famous senatorial
campaign at Springfield, Illinois. The convention before
which he spoke consisted of a thousand delegates together
with the crowd that had gathered with them.
His speech was carefully prepared. Every
 sentence was guarded and emphatic. It has since become
famous as "The Divided House" speech. Before entering the
hall where it was to be delivered, he stepped into the
office of his law-partner, Mr. Herndon, and, locking the
door, so that their interview might be private, took his
manuscript from his pocket, and read one of the opening
sentences: "I believe this government cannot endure
permanently, half slave and half free."
Mr. Herndon remarked that the sentiment was true, but
suggested that it might not be good policy to utter it at
Mr. Lincoln replied with great firmness: "No matter about
the policy. It is true, and the nation is entitled to it.
The proposition has been true for six thousand years, and I
will deliver it as it is written."