FALSE – I am very much a disciple of Snopes.com but it never occurred to me to check this particular quote there. I should have. When someone referenced the quote on Facebook, the following was included as “also shared”. Thanks, Facebook. Questionable Quote’s – Lincoln’s Prophesy
Somewhere in my memory was the knowledge that Abraham Lincoln had uttered the words “this cruel war”. I thought it might be something I could fit into my post on the blog by that name so I did some searching. Abe used the phrase more than once and he was not the only one to use it. In the end I didn’t reference any Lincoln quote in that post but I did find some. I’m going to use one here to produce an asynchronous blog post that involves neither a trip I’ve taken nor something I’ve owned. Here’s what Lincoln said in a November 21, 1864, letter to Col. William F. Elkins:
We may congratulate ourselves that this cruel war is nearing its end. It has cost a vast amount of treasure and blood. . . .
It has indeed been a trying hour for the Republic; but I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country. As a result of the war, corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until all wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed. I feel at this moment more anxiety for the safety of my country than ever before, even in the midst of war. God grant that my suspicions may prove groundless.
There is a discussion of the quote’s authenticity here. The photos are of Seward Johnson’s colossal Return Visit displayed this summer in Troy, Ohio.