The second election of Abraham Lincoln to the Presidency of the United States was the reward of his courage and genius bestowed upon him by the people of the Union States. General George B. McClellan was his opponent in 1864 upon the platform that “the War is a failure,” and carried but three States—New Jersey, Delaware and Kentucky. The States which did not think the War was a failure were those in New England, New York, Pennsylvania, all the Western commonwealths, West Virginia, Tennessee, Louisiana, Arkansas and the new State of Nevada, admitted into the Union on October 31st. President Lincoln’s popular majority over McClellan, who never did much toward making the War a success, was more than four hundred thousand. Underneath the cartoon reproduced here, from “Harper’s Weekly” of November 26th, 1864, were the words, “Long Abraham Lincoln a Little Longer.”
But the beloved President’s time upon earth was not to be much longer, as he was assassinated just one month and ten days after his second inauguration. Indeed, the words, “a little longer,” printed below the cartoon, were strangely prophetic, although not intended to be such.
The people of the United States had learned to love “Long Abe,” their affection being of a purely personal nature, in the main. No other Chief Executive was regarded as so sincerely the friend of the great mass of the inhabitants of the Republic as Lincoln. He was, in truth, one of “the common people,” having been born among them, and lived as one of them.
Lincoln’s great height made him an easy subject for the cartoonist, and they used it in his favor as well as against him.