Dizin Eklenmedi

Abraham Lincoln, the U.S. Civil War, and the International Press

Received: 2014-08-18 Accepted: 2014-09-26 Published: 2014-11-10



Most studies of Abraham Lincoln and the press focus on how American newspapers covered the sixteenth president of the United States. In this study, the author looks at how the international press covered Lincoln. Closest in proximity was the Canadian press, which tended to side with the Union but at the same time was not totally unsympathetic with the Confederacy because it saw the South as a countervailing influence on the growing U.S. military apparatus. Indeed, once the war ended, the Hamilton Spectator began to worry that the Americans might be more tempted to invade their neighbor to the north because it now possessed the strongest army and navy in the world. The British journalist William Howard Russell likewise had a somewhat complex view of the war. The Times of London correspondent found Lincoln to be more sophisticated than the country bumpkin stereotype that played fairly well in the London press. Russell sided with the Union, but he was somewhat smitten with the South in a social sense, as he observed the Confederates really did like the monarchy and aristocracy of Great Britain. In other countries, the key issue of Lincoln’s presidency was economics. The Indian press followed the international cotton trade and saw the Union blockade of the South as an opportunity to export more and more Indian cotton. Thus, Indian journals paid attention to the quality of the cotton crop, as well as British incentive programs to get Indian farmers to expand their production of the fiber. Thus, this study examines the various ways the international press saw Lincoln and the central issue of his administration, the internecine war. This study shows that international journalism was mainly concerned with the strategic implications of the war, while interest in Lincoln’s personality and statesmanship were secondary.


Keywords: Canada; cartoons; Germany; Great Britain; Greeley, Horace; India, journalism; Lincoln, Abraham; magazines; newspapers; Punch; Times of London; and U.S. Civil War.

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