Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davis and their work

Essay by Anonymous UserA+, January 1996

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In this report I compare two great historical figures: Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president, steered the Union to victory in the American Civil War and abolished slavery, and the first and only president of the Confederate States of America, Jefferson Davis. Abraham Lincoln was the President of the Union, and Jefferson Davis struggled to lead the Confederacy to independence in the U.S. Civil War. Lincoln was treasured by the African Americans and was considered an earthly incarnation of the Savior of mankind (DeGregorio 20-25). On the other hand, Davis was both admired and hated. Lincoln had a different view of how the U.S. should be in abolishing slavery. Davis was a politician, president of the Confederate States of America, and also a successful planter. He had beliefs for the South to continue in the old ways with slavery and plantations. Both Lincoln and Davis had strong feelings for the protection of their land (Arnold 55-57).

Both Abraham and Jefferson Davis shared several differences and similarities. Lincoln was known to have an easy going and joking type attitude. In contrast, Davis had a temper such that when challenged, he simply could not back down (DeGregorio 89). Davis had been a fire-eater before Abraham Lincoln's election, but the prospect of Civil War made him gloomy and depressed. Fifty-three years old in 1861, he suffered from a variety of ailments such as fever, neuralgia, and inflamed eye, poor digestion, insomnia, and stress. Lincoln also suffered from illnesses during the war. He had severe cases of headaches and stress.

Both presidents had a lot of pressure of them due to the fact of defending their region. Lincoln had difficulties growing up because of the deaths early in his childhood, poverty, and little education. Davis; however, studied at a Roman Catholic school in...