2009 Lincoln Cent Design #4 | Presidency in Washington, DC Penny

The fourth and final redesigned 2009 Lincoln penny launched on November 12, 2009, at 10:00 AM ET at the Ulysses S. Grant Memorial on the west side of the US Capitol. The design represents Lincoln's Presidency in Washington, DC from 1861 to 1865.

2009 Lincoln Cent Design #4

The fourth 2009 Lincoln Pennies, or cents, portrays the half finished United States Capitol dome in Washington, DC. The coin also bears the inscriptions UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, E PLURIBUS UNUM and ONE CENT.

It was designed designed by United States Mint AIP Master Designer Susan Gamble and sculpted by United States Sculptor-Engraver Joseph Menna.

Lincoln's Presidency in Washington, DC (1861-1865)

Abraham Lincoln was elected the 16th President of the United States on November 6, 1860, a fact further irritating the southern states, as he was not even on the ballot in 9 of them.

Following his election, southern states started seceding from the union, first of which was South Carolina. February of the next year found 6 other states joining South Carolina, all of which formed the Confederate States of America. In his first inaugural address, President Lincoln made the following statement towards the southern states:

"In your hands, my dissatisfied fellow countrymen, and not in mine, is the momentous issue of civil war. The government will not assail you. You can have no conflict without being yourselves the aggressors. You have no oath registered in Heaven to destroy the government, while I shall have the most solemn one to preserve, protect, and defend it."

President Lincoln proved to be a man of his word, and did not take military action against the south, until they attacked Union forces at Fort Sumter. At that point, he felt he had no option left but to force the south into submission. Lincoln was known to be a hands on Commander-In-Chief, and could be found down at the telegraph office waiting for dispatches from his generals.

The American Civil War was a costly one, especially in the number of lives. The Battle of Gettysburg in 1863 would end up claiming an estimated 50,000 union and confederate troops. That fall, President Lincoln made the Gettysburg Address, a speech dedicating the cemetery there that would come to be one of the most quoted in American history. In it he stated:

"Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation, so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. .. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract…that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."

President Lincoln would win a second term, and the United States would soon have victory over the Confederate States. Their surrender at Appomattox on April 8, 1865 marked the beginning of the healing between the states. Lincoln's policy was to be kind and generous to the south, but he would not live to ensure that goal. In his second inaugural address, he was quoted to say:

"With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation's wounds, to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow and his orphan, to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations."

While attending a play at Ford's theatre, President Abraham Lincoln was shot in the back of the head by John Wilkes Booth. Booth was an actor and a sympathizer of the southern cause. President Lincoln was carried across the street to the Peterson House, where he lied in a coma for 9 hours, before dying on April 15, 1865. Lincoln was the first president to be assassinated.

The body of the President was carried by train through several states on its way to Springfield, Illinois, where he was to be buried in Oak Ridge Cemetery. His body remains there today in the Lincoln Tomb.

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