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A President Who Lived & Died for Liberty

By James Swanson & Michael Bishop, Wall Street Journal - April 14, 2015

One hundred and fifty years ago, on April 14, 1865, Abraham Lincoln went to the theater.

The day began as one of the happiest of his life. Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee’s surrender on April 9 had elated him, and he had been more buoyant than at any other time during his presidency. Three-quarters of a million men had fallen in the Civil War over which he had presided, and the conflict had almost consumed him.

“This war is eating my life out,” he once said to abolitionist Illinois congressman Owen Lovejoy. “I have a strong impression that I shall not live to see the end.”

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