Lincoln Programs and Online Video Segments

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The Kentucky Life special Lincoln: ‘I, too, am a Kentuckian’ follows the trail that took Lincoln from his birth in a log cabin on the Kentucky frontier to the White House—and into history.

Online, you can watch a 14-minute video “Lincoln: The Kentucky Years.” This video was adapted from the longer documentary and focuses on Lincoln’s life in Kentucky and the state’s influences on his ideas.

You can also watch these 31 short video segments from “Lincoln: ‘I, too, am a Kentuckian’ and other KET productions.

vid11. Lincoln’s Ties to Kentucky
A variety of historians and experts briefly address why Lincoln is important and how Kentucky shaped his life.

vid22. Hodgenville Birthplace
Learn about the Hodgenville, KY, birthplace monument that houses the symbolic birthplace cabin.

vid33. Lincoln’s Family History
Learn about the history of Lincoln’s family and how Lincoln’s grandfather Abraham made his way through the Cumberland Gap, settled in Kentucky, and started a family.

vid44. Lincoln’s Parents’ Marriage Certificate
The search for Lincoln’s parent’s marriage certificate proved to be challenging due to developing county parameters at the time.

vid55. Lincoln’s Early Education
What kind of education did Lincoln have access to on the Kentucky frontier? And how did his natural gift for storytelling and his intellect set him apart?

vid66. The Lincolns Go West
The Lincoln family leaves the settled Knob Creek farm and the relative comforts of Kentucky for the Indian wilderness.

vid77. Lincoln’s Mother
The death of Lincoln’s mother, Nancy Hanks, had a lifelong impact on her son.

vid88. Stepmother Sarah Bush’s Impact on Lincoln
After the death of Nancy Hanks, Abraham’s father, Thomas Lincoln, marries Sarah and she, too, has a great influence on her stepson, encouraging him in his studies and reading. However, Lincoln’s father views Abraham’s love of books as a sign of laziness.

vid99. Making a Career
Abraham Lincoln serves four years in the Illinois legislature and passes the bar as a self-taught lawyer. Moving to Springfield, IL, he meet a man who will become a lifelong friend—Joshua Speed.

vid1010. Lincoln’s Admiration for Henry Clay
As a successful attorney and local politician, Lincoln joins the rising upper class in Springfield. He is influenced by the Whig Party leader, another Kentuckian, Henry Clay.

vid1111. The Issue of Slavery
In 1849, Lincoln returns home to Springfield. The Whig Party is divided over the issue of slavery, and Kentuckian Cassius Clay and others join the Liberty Party that wanted to abolish slavery.

vid1212. Abolition and Slavery as Political Issues
Amid growing debate and division over the issue of slavery, the Republican Party is formed and Lincoln joins, believing that slavery could be abolished slowly over time.

vid1313. Slavery and Formation of Republican Party
In the South, slavery is viewed as an economic necessity instead of a moral issue. Lincoln decides he cannot compromise on slavery. He runs for the U.S. Senate against Stephen Douglas.

vid1414. The Cooper Union Speech
The Cooper Union speech in New York makes a huge impact, bringing the backwoods attorney even farther into the national spotlight.

vid1515. Lincoln Wins the Presidency
The Cooper Union address and the Douglas debates make Lincoln a household name in the summer of 1860. He wins the Republican nomination for president and the election, and seven states secede from the Union.

vid1616. Lincoln and the Civil War
By the time Lincoln arrives in Washington, most of the southern states have left the union, forming the Confederate States of America with another Kentucky native, Jefferson Davis, as president. Six weeks into Lincoln’s term, the Civil War begins at Fort Sumter, SC.

vid1717. Kentucky’s Strategic Location in the Civil War
During the war Kentucky is valued strategically for its location between the North and the South and its access to the Ohio River.

vid1818. The Emancipation Proclamation
The Emancipation Proclamation is issued. It doesn’t solve the problem of slavery, only freeing slaves in the states that seceded.

vid1919. Major Kentucky Civil War Battles
By 1862, the war has spread to Kentucky. The Confederates raid Munfordville and Richmond. The most deadly battle in Kentucky takes place just outside of Perryville.

vid2020. Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address
Lincoln gives the short and eloquent Gettysburg Address at the cemetery on the Pennsylvania battlefield where nearly 8,000 men died.

vid2121. Enlisting Black Kentuckians to Fight
In 1864, the Union recruits 24,000 African-Americans to serve in the army. More than 10,000 train at Camp Nelson in Kentucky.

vid2222. Lincoln’s Assassination
Many Kentuckians turn against the war when Lincoln enlists black soldiers. There is also anger toward Lincoln because of the political and economic conditions. On April 14, 1865, Lincoln is assassinated.

vid2323. Kentucky Turns Toward the South
The 13th Amendment frees all slaves and creates bitterness towards Lincoln as Kentucky’s economy was tied to slavery.

vid2424. Lincoln’s Legacy, From Schools to the Civil Rights Movement
Lincoln’s legacy lives on in the naming of schools and also in the hearts of many African Americans. The outlawing of segregation and the power of the Civil Rights Movement helps change the minds of Kentuckians toward Lincoln.

vid2525. Remembering Lincoln in 1975-1977
From monuments to festivals, Lincoln is remembered in many ways in Kentucky.

vid2626. Kentucky’s Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Celebration
Kentucky marks the 200th anniversary of Lincoln’s birth with concerts, dramatizations, memorials, and renewed emphasis on Lincoln Heritage sites.

Video Segments from Other KET Productions

vid27Kentucky’s Camp Nelson
Visit Camp Nelson, the Jessamine County military cemetery that was once the primary training camp for black soldiers who had volunteered to fight for the Union in the Civil War. From Kentucky Life.

vid28Sculptor Ed Hamilton
Meet sculptor Ed Hamilton, who was commissioned to create a new Lincoln statue for Louisville’s Waterfront Park. The work is to commemorate the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial in Kentucky. From Louisville Life.

vid29The Mary Todd Lincoln House
Learn about Mary Todd’s Lexington childhood with a visit to the restored family home in Lexington, Kentucky. From Kentucky Life.

vid30Lincoln Seen and Heard
Sam Waterston and Lincoln scholar Harold Holzer perform a dramatic presentation of Lincoln speeches and photographs. Holzer analyzes Lincoln’s poses, physical appearance, and surroundings in archival photographs, and Waterston recites segments of speeches. From The Lincoln Bicentennial Gala.

vid31Sculptor Robert Berks
In this segment, taped as his sculpture of Lincoln was nearing completion, noted American sculptor Robert Berks describes how his research gave him a new understanding of the 16th president and how that understanding is reflected in the sculpture. From Kentucky Life.

Audio Clips from the Lincoln Bicentennial Gala

The Lincoln Bicentennial Gala celebrates the 200th anniversary of Lincoln’s birth. In these audio clips you will hear Lincoln's complete Gettysburg address and Lincoln's speech from the Lincoln-Douglas debate as read by Sam Waterston.

The Gettysburg Address

The Lincoln-Douglas Debate