￼The 16th president of the United States, Abraham Lincoln is more than an iconic figure in the history of the country.
Serious study of Lincoln reveals a remarkably sensitive human being who was thrust into cataclysmic events of his young country. Although history proves him to be a uniquely gifted politician, philosopher and leader, Lincoln was arguably one of the least prepared men for the office and for the challenge. ￼
￼￼Few contemporaries thought he could handle the job. His selection for the post of Secretary of State, William Seward even proposed that he run the country while Lincoln would be the titular head of state. Though Lincoln struggled with self-doubt and was surrounded by a self-serving and sometimes hysterical staff, he steadily built an effective government and army. ￼
￼￼Clearly a great man and a fascinating historical figure, Lincoln is an inspiration because of his personal struggles to overcome adversity without losing his philosophical bearings or his essential humanity. Lincoln was an eminently practical man who focused on getting done what he could for the greater good. "I never had a policy; I have just tried to do my very best each and every day."￼ ￼￼There are thousands of books on Abraham Lincoln, with more being written all the time. Many are quite good as he has attracted some of the best historical authors. A good book to start with is Mark Neely's ￼￼The Last Best Hope of Earth￼￼. It is a brief but excellent synopsis of Lincoln's presidency.￼