It was on November 19, 1863 that President Abraham Lincoln gave his now famous “Gettysburg Address” at the consecration of the Civil War cemetery there. Here on the Gettysburg Address Web site, you can explore the documents from that event.
The site is divided into four main sections, with two links to more of Lincoln’s papers.
Drafts of the Gettysburg Address – Here you’ll find two rough drafts of the “Gettysburg Address.” You can not only view pictures of them, but you can also read the transcription of the texts. There’s some debate over whether or not the Nicolay version was Lincoln’s reading copy of the address. You’ll also find a copy of the version that’s on the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.
Lincoln’s Invitation to Gettysburg – Lincoln was invited to speak at the consecration of the cemetery by David Wills. Here you can read both the initial invitation and the cordial invitation for Lincoln to stay at Wills’ home. The letters also have their accompanying transcription, which I found to be very helpful, because Wills’ handwriting is so full of flourish, it was hard to read.
Only Known Photo of Lincoln at Gettysburg – Here you’ll find not only the photo mentioned in the title of this section, but also a detail shot of it. You’ll have to decide for yourself if you really think it’s Lincoln.
Preservation Techniques for Old Documents – I’m quite pleased that they include this information along with the other documents. I was wondering how they would go about preserving those important historical papers. Thankfully, it’s explained here in detail so that you’ll have no doubt about how it’s done.
This is a very interesting look into one of the most well known addresses given in history. Check it out!