“I vote you!” Lincoln and His Elections

Title: “I vote you!” Lincoln and His Elections

Topic: Lincoln and Elections

Description: Elections today in the U.S. look a bit different than they did during Lincoln’s time. Explore the way candidates campaigned (if at all!), the way conventions were involved with their parties, and even who could vote and where to cast the ballots. Add in a Civil War and the Confederate States of America, and that creates an even more complicated election. Learn about all this through original ballots, campaign songs, and speeches.

Target Audience: Middle School students, High School students

Indiana State Standards:

4.1.8 (4th grade: Summarize the impact of Abraham Lincoln’s presidency on Indiana and describe the participation of Indiana citizens in the Civil War)

8.1.30 (8th grade: Using primary and secondary sources, analyze an issue confronting the United States from colonial times through the Reconstruction period)

IS.1.6 (High School: Describe causes and lasting effects of the Civil War and Reconstruction as well as the political controversies surrounding this time)

USG 1.6 (High school: Compare and contrast unitary, confederate, and federal systems of government)

Outcomes: Students will be able to identify the different components of the 1860 and 1865 election. They will be able to explain the different political parties, the impact that the war had on elections, and how Lincoln was able to win two terms. Students will also be able to identify political support from newspapers, songsters, and election tickets. Students will be able to compare and contract current elections and mid-1800 elections.

Evaluation: A post-presentation Q&A with the class will determine outcomes; a questionnaire will be sent out to the teacher/class to complete either onsite or electronically after the presentation.