An authority on nineteenth-century United States history, Professor John Rodrigue knows a great deal about President Abraham Lincoln, not to mention the Civil War and Reconstruction era, slavery and emancipation.
With President’s Day approaching, we asked Rodrigue to list three things everyone should know about America’s 16th president. After assuring us that Lincoln was not a vampire hunter, as suggested by a 2012 fantasy horror movie, Rodrigue noted that Lincoln:
- saved the Union by prosecuting a war of unconditional surrender against the Confederacy and holding the northern war effort together.
- issued the Emancipation Proclamation, freeing the slaves (though it was more complicated than that).
- authored the Gettysburg Address, one of the great documents in U.S. history.
Teaching at Stonehill since 2007, Rodrigue is the Lawrence and Theresa Salameno Professor of History at the College. In 2013, he published Lincoln and Reconstruction, a volume in Southern Illinois University Press's Concise Lincoln Library series. He is currently working on a study of the abolition of slavery in the lower Mississippi valley during the Civil War. He is also working on a long-term project on the southern planters after the war. To read more about him, visit here.