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  • Welcome to the beautiful Lincoln Memorial. The monument is built in honor of the 16th

  • President of the United States; Abraham Lincoln. While it is only one of several monuments

  • built to honor an American president, many regard this one as the very finest one. Partly

  • because of the beauty of the monument, but also because of the man it is built to honor.

  • Before going into details about the monument itself, I want to give you a brief summary

  • of who Abraham Lincoln was. Abraham Lincoln was born in 1809 on a small

  • farm south of Hodgenville, Kentucky. He was raised in a poor home, being the son of two

  • uneducated farmers. Abraham himself however, quickly developed an interest in studies.

  • While his formal education consisted of about 18 months of schooling from unofficial teachers,

  • he still mastered the Bible, William Shakespeare's works, English history and American history.

  • He was very much self educated, reading every book he could get his hands on. He soon developed

  • a plain writing and rhetorical style that puzzled audiences. This brought him into politics

  • at the age of 23, when he became a member of the Whig party, and later elected to a

  • term is the US House of Representatives in 1846. With his unorthodox rhetorical style

  • he made both enemies and friends and left the politics after one term and began working

  • as a lawyer. He later returned to politics, and this time got a much more central role,

  • as he won the Republican Party nomination in 1860 and was elected president the same

  • year. Lincoln's hatred for slavery made the already strained relation between the northern

  • and southern states even more problematic. The civil war broke out the very next year.

  • Throughout the civil war, Lincoln was the political leader for the Union and his leadership

  • qualities helped to preserve the Unites States to what it is today. Lincoln rallied public

  • opinion through the powerful rhetoric of his messages and speeches. His "Gettysburg Address",

  • the speech he gave a few months after the Union victory at Gettysburg, is a prime example

  • and one of the most quoted speeches in US history. Lincoln is however most known for

  • issuing his Emancipation Proclamation and his contribution in passing the Thirteenth

  • Amendment which permanently abolished slavery in the US. In 1865, shortly after the war

  • was won, Lincoln was assassinated while watching a theatre act. This made him a martyr for

  • the ideal of national unity and he's today one of the most famous and highly ranked of

  • all US presidents. The first planning of constructing a memorial

  • to Lincoln started in two years after his assassination. However, the site for the memorial

  • was not chosen until 1902. Congress formally authorized the memorial in 1911 and the first

  • stone was put into place three years later on Lincoln's birthday, February 12. The monument

  • was dedicated in 1922, with Lincolns then only surviving child, Robert Todd Lincoln,

  • attending the ceremony. The building you are looking at is made out

  • of Indiana limestone and Yule marble, which gives the memorial its shining white color.

  • The building is heavily inspired by the ancient Greek Temple of Zeus. This is not only evident

  • because it is surrounded by massive columns, but also because it is centered around a large

  • statue of a man sitting on a throne. In the Temple of Zeus it was Zeus sitting on the

  • throne; in this case it's Abraham Lincoln. The 36 columns are interpreted as representing

  • the 25 U.S. states at the time of Lincoln's death, as well as the 11 Confederate states.

  • If you take a look above the columns, you will the see name of the states inscribed

  • in the order that each state joined the Union along with the year of their joining in Roman

  • numerals. The names of the remaining 22 states that had joined the Union when the memorial

  • was completed are carved on the exterior attic walls in the same manner, even though it can

  • be hard to see from the ground. A plaque in front of the monument also honors the admission

  • of Alaska and Hawaii in 1959. While the outside itself is very beautiful,

  • the focus of the memorial is Daniel Chester French's sculpture of Lincoln, seated on a

  • throne, stoically looking east over the reflecting pool towards the Washington Monument. The

  • statue was carved from 28 blocks f white Georgia marble and stands six meters high and six

  • meters wide. Behind the statue on the wall, you can read the phrase:

  • IN THIS TEMPLE AS IN THE HEARTS OF THE PEOPLE

  • FOR WHOM HE SAVED THE UNION THE MEMORY OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN

  • IS ENSHRINED FOREVER You can also find some of Lincoln's speeches

  • inscribed on the walls inside the memorial. On the south side you can find his famous

  • speech at Gettysburg and on the other side his second inaugural speech.

  • This site itself has also been the place for several famous speeches. The most famous one

  • came in 1963, during one of the greatest political rallies in US history; the March on Washington

  • for Jobs and Freedom which gathered more than 250.000 people in the area surrounding the

  • memorial. They came to hear Martin Luther King, Jr. deliver his memorable speech, "I

  • Have a Dream," before the memorial honoring the president who had issued the Emancipation

  • Proclamation 100 years earlier. If you take a look at the steps just in front of the building,

  • you will see an inscription in the ground, marking where King stood when he held his

  • speech. The Lincoln memorial is today a very popular

  • place for visitors, not only typical tourists, but also many schools take field trips to

  • the memorial in educational purpose. In total, an estimate of more than 3.5 million people

  • visits the site annually.

Welcome to the beautiful Lincoln Memorial. The monument is built in honor of the 16th

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    潘宇將 posted on 2014/03/23
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