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Abraham Lincoln

Timeline

Important Terms, People and Events

1809 - 1832

February 12, 1809: ·Abraham Lincoln born in Hardin County, Kentucky, near Hodgenville
December 1816: ·Family relocates to frontier of Indiana
October 5, 1818: ·Mother Nancy Hanks Lincoln dies of milk sickness
December 5, 1819: ·Father Thomas Lincoln remarries widow Sarah Bush Johnston
January 1820: ·Missouri Compromise sets boundary line between free and slave territory
January 20, 1828: ·Lincoln's elder sister Sarah Lincoln dies during childbirth
April 1828: ·Lincoln works on cargo flatboat bound for New Orleans
March 1830: ·Family relocates to Illinois, settling along Sangamon River
March 1831: ·Lincoln makes second flatboat trip to New Orleans
July 1831: ·Separates from his family, moving to New Salem, Illinois
April-June 1832: ·Serves as captain of volunteer company in Black Hawk War
August 6, 1832: ·Loses bid for Illinois State Legislature
May 1833: ·Becomes postmaster of New Salem
October 1833: ·Takes up work as surveyor
August 4, 1834: ·Elected to Illinois State Legislature at age 24
January 1835: ·Lincoln's village store fails when his partner dies
August 25, 1835: ·Ann Rutledge dies
August 1, 1836: ·Lincoln re-elected to Illinois state legislature
March 1, 1837: ·Admitted to the bar in Illinois; begins practicing law
March 15, 1837: ·Relocates to Springfield after state capital is moved there
April 12, 1837: ·Forms law partnership with John T. Stuart
August 6, 1838: ·Re-elected to Illinois State Legislature for a third term
August 3, 1840: ·Re-elected to Illinois State Legislature for a fourth term
Autumn 1840: ·Becomes engaged to Mary Todd
January 1, 1841: ·Breaks off engagement with Mary Todd
May 14, 1841: ·Forms law partnership with Stephen T. Logan
Spring 1842: ·Decides not to seek fifth term in Illinois state legislature
September 1842: ·Challenged to duel by James Shields; later called off
November 4, 1842: ·Married to Mary Todd in an Episcopalian Service in Springfield
May 1, 1843: ·Lincoln fails to obtain Whig nomination for U.S. Congress
August 1, 1843: ·Eldest son Robert Todd born
January 7, 1844: ·Lincoln buys frame house in Springfield
September 20, 1844: ·Forms law partnership with William Herndon
March 10, 1846: ·Second son Edward Baker born
August 3, 1846: ·Elected to U.S. Congress as Whig Representative from Illinois
October 25, 1847: ·Lincoln family leaves Springfield for Washington
December 6, 1847: ·Lincoln present at convocation of Thirtieth Congress
January 22, 1848: ·On House floor, makes criticisms of President Polk and Mexican War
January 10, 1849: ·Introduces gradual emancipation bill for slaves in District of Columbia
March 31, 1849: ·Completes term in Washington and returns to Springfield to practice law
June 21, 1849: ·Fails to secure position as commissioner of General Land Office
Summer 1849: ·Refuses offer to become governor of Oregon Territory
February 1, 1850: ·Son Edward Lincoln dies after prolonged illness
Autumn 1850: ·Omnibus Compromise of 1850 signed into law
December 21, 1850: ·Third son William Wallace born
January 17, 1851: ·Father Thomas Lincoln dies.
July 16, 1852: ·Delivers eulogy of Henry Clay in Springfield
April 4, 1853: · Fourth son Thomas "Tad" born
May 24, 1854: · Kansas-Nebraska Act becomes law, nullifying Missouri Compromise
October 15, 1854: ·Lincoln makes speech in Peoria in opposition to popular sovereignty
November 7, 1854: ·Elected to Illinois state legislature, declines seat to run for U.S. Senate
February 8, 1855: ·Lincoln loses Senate bid
June 17, 1856: ·Lincoln attends first Republican national convention in Philadelphia; receives considerable support for vice-presidential nomination
March 6, 1857: ·Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger P. Taney reads Dred Scott decision
June 26, 1857: ·Speaks out against Dred Scott decision in Springfield
June 16, 1858: ·Receives Republican nomination for U.S. Senate; delivers famous "house divided" speech
Autumn 1858: ·Participates in a series of debates with incumbent Senator Stephen Douglas
November 2, 1858: ·Loses Senate bid once again
October 16, 1859: ·John Brown leads raid on Harper's Ferry, Virginia
February 27, 1860: ·Lincoln delivers speech at Cooper Institute, New York City
April 23, 1860: ·Democratic convention in Charleston, South Carolina fractures
May 18, 1860: · Receives nomination for president at Republican convention in Chicago
June 1860: ·Northern Democrats nominate Stephen Douglas for president; Southern Democrats nominate John Breckenridge for President; Constitutional Union Party nominates John Bell for President
November 6, 1860: ·Lincoln elected 16th President of the United States
December 20, 1860: ·South Carolina becomes first state to secede from the Union
February 9, 1861: ·Confederate States of America formed in Montgomery, Alabama
February 11, 1861: ·Lincoln makes farewell address at Springfield, embarks for Washington
March 4, 1861: ·Lincoln inaugurated in Washington, delivers First Inaugural Address
March 29, 1861: ·Orders reinforcements sent to Fort Sumter
April 12, 1861: ·Confederate forces open fire on Fort Sumter, beginning Civil War
April 15, 1861: ·Lincoln calls for a temporary militia of 75,000 soldiers
April 17, 1861: ·Virginia secedes from the Union
April 18, 1861: ·Lincoln invites Robert E. Lee to head Union armies; Lee declines and resigns post
April 19, 1861: ·Lincoln proclaims blockade against Southern ports
April 27, 1861: ·Suspends writ of habeas corpus
May 10, 1861: ·Declares martial law in Maryland
June 3, 1861: ·Stephen Douglas dies in Chicago
July 21, 1861: ·Union forces routed at First Manassas (Bull Run)
July 22, 1861: ·Congress grants Lincoln considerable war powers
August 1861: ·Declares martial law in Missouri
November 1, 1861: ·George McClellan promoted to general-in-chief of Union forces
November 8, 1861: · Trent Affair strains relations with Britain
December 26, 1861: ·Releases Confederate ministers detained during Trent Affair
February 20, 1862: ·Son William Wallace Lincoln dies
March 9, 1862: ·Ironclad warships Monitor and Virginia battle to a draw
March 11, 1862: ·Lincoln takes supreme command of Union forces; McClellan begins Peninsular Campaign on Richmond
April 6-7, 1862: ·Battle of Shiloh in Tennessee results in heavy losses for both sides
April 16, 1862: ·Lincoln signs act abolishing slavery in District of Columbia
April 24, 1862: ·David Farragut leads Union navy's seizure of New Orleans
May 20, 1862: ·Homestead Act signed into law
June 19, 1862: ·Slavery prohibited in United States territories
June 25-July 1 1862: ·Seven Days' Battles in Virginia end in defeat and retreat for Union
July 1, 1862: ·Pacific Railroad Act signed into law; Lincoln calls for 300,000 volunteers
July 2, 1862: ·Morrill Land Grant Act signed into law
July 11, 1862: ·Lincoln appoints Henry Halleck as general-in-chief of Union forces
August 19, 1862: ·Reply to Horace Greeley editorial regarding war aims
August 29-30, 1862: ·Union forces routed at Second Manassas (Bull Run)
September 17, 1862: ·Union forces turn back the Confederate attack at the Battle of Antietam
September 22, 1862: ·Lincoln issues a preliminary version of the Emancipation Proclamation
October 3, 1862: ·Lincoln visits Union forces at Antietam
November 5, 1862: ·Lincoln promotes Ambrose Burnside to direct Union forces in the east
December 13, 1862: ·Union forces routed at Battle of Fredericksburg
January 1, 1863: ·Emancipation Proclamation goes into effect
January 2, 1863: ·Fighting at the Battle of Mumfreesboro ends inconclusively
January 25, 1863: ·Lincoln names Joseph Hooker to command Union forces in the east
January 29, 1863: ·Lincoln names U.S. Grant to command Union forces in the west
February 25, 1863: ·Lincoln signs National Bank Act into law
March 3, 1863: ·Lincoln signs Conscription Act into law amidst heavy protests
May 1-4, 1863: ·Union forces routed at Chancellorsville
May 19, 1863: ·Copperhead Clement L. Vallandigham arrested and banished from Union
June 20, 1863: ·West Virginia admitted to Union as 35th state
June 28, 1863: ·Lincoln names George Meade to command Union forces in the east
July 1-3, 1863: ·Union forces victorious at Battle of Gettysburg
July 4, 1863: ·Union forces seize Vicksburg, gain control of Mississippi River
July 12-15, 1863: ·Draft riots occur in New York City
September 19-20, 1863: ·Union forces routed at Chickamauga
November 19, 1863: ·Lincoln delivers Gettysburg Address at dedication of national cemetery
November 25, 1863: ·Union forces seize Chattanooga
December 8, 1863: ·Lincoln issues initial plans for reconstruction
March 9, 1864: ·Grant assumes command of all Union forces; William Tecumseh Sherman takes control in western theater
June 8, 1864: ·Lincoln nominated for President by National Union Party
June 15, 1864: ·Grant digs in for nine-month siege of Petersburg
July 18, 1864: ·Lincoln calls for 500,000 more volunteers
August 29, 1864: ·Democrats nominate McClellan for president on peace platform
September 2, 1864: ·Sherman's forces break Confederate defenses and march on Atlanta
October 19, 1864: ·Union forces gain control of Shenandoah Valley, Virginia
November 8, 1864: ·Lincoln re-elected president
November 15, 1864: ·Sherman burns Atlanta, begins march to the sea
February 3, 1865: ·Lincoln attends unsuccessful peace conference in Hampton Roads, Virginia
March 4, 1865: ·Lincoln delivers Second Inaugural Address
March 11, 1865: ·Issues presidential pardon for Union deserters
April 2, 1865: ·Grant's forces break Confederate defensive and march on Richmond
April 4, 1865: ·Lincoln visits destruction at Richmond
April 9, 1865: ·Lee surrenders to Grant near Appomattox Court House, Virginia
April 11, 1865: ·Lincoln makes last public speech, concerning question of reconstruction
April 14, 1865: ·Lincoln fatally shot by John Wilkes Booth while attending play at Ford's Theater, Washington, D.C.
April 15, 1865: ·Lincoln dies at 7:22 a.m. from complications caused by gunshot wound
May 4, 1865: ·Lincoln interred at Oak Ridge Cemetery, near Springfield, Illinois

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