Lincoln’s Second Inauguration

Award-winning writer and Boston College alumnus Edward Achorn focuses on a critical conjuncture in American history in his new book, Every Drop of Blood: The Momentous Second Inauguration of Abraham Lincoln (Atlantic Monthly Press/Grove Atlantic, 2020). He depicts the various characters, from wounded Union colonel Selden Connor to Walt Whitman, Clara Barton, and Frederick Douglass, who converge on the nation’s capital for Lincoln’s second inauguration and heard “perhaps the greatest inaugural address” in the country’s history. In a 701-word speech, Lincoln that said that both the North and South had been wrong, and that the Civil War’s unimaginable horrors―every drop of blood spilled―might well have been God’s just verdict on the national sin of slavery. Achorn is a Pulitzer Prize finalist for Distinguished Commentary and the editorial pages editor of The Providence Journal. His previous books are Fifty-Nine in ’84: Old Hoss Radbourn, Barehanded Baseball and the Greatest Season a Pitcher Ever Had and The Summer of Beer and Whiskey: How Brewers, Barkeeps, Rowdies, Immigrants, and a Wild Pennant Fight Made Baseball America’s Game. Read more in The Economist

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