Lincoln’s Birthday is Feb. 12

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Provided by Prince William County

Abraham Lincoln’s birthday is on Feb. 12, but in 1971, Lincoln’s birthday combined with other presidents’ birthdays and is now celebrated on Presidents Day on the third Monday in February.

Lincoln, the 16th U.S. president, was born in 1809 in a one-room log cabin in LaRue County, Kentucky. His father, Thomas Lincoln, was an illiterate farmer. Abraham Lincoln’s mother, Nancy Hanks Lincoln, died when he was nine years old. After the death of his first wife, Thomas Lincoln married Sarah Bush Johnson. Johnson was also illiterate but recognized Abraham Lincoln’s “uncommon natural talents” and encouraged him as he taught himself to read and write, according to the Library of Congress website.

Lincoln, who made a living working in stores and splitting wood, became preoccupied with politics and law as he progressed in his studies. In 1834 he was elected to the Illinois State Legislature.

Lincoln served as president during the American Civil War, preserved the union, and issued the Emancipation Proclamation. His 1865 assassination cemented his position as a legendary president.

Today there are a handful of states, including New York, Connecticut, Missouri, and Illinois, that still recognize Lincoln’s birthday as a stand-alone, public holiday.


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