Lincoln’s legacy continued with Obama election

By Hal Smith

Lincoln’s legacy continued with Obama election

With the election of Barack Obama to become the 44th President of the United States, 232 years after our founding fathers proclaimed our independence and defined the dream of our new nation; 150 years after Abraham Lincoln proclaimed the nation could no longer stand divided by slavery; and 40 years after Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. passionately and eloquently preached of the promised land, America once again passed a new torch to yet another new generation.

Remarkably, Lincoln’s moral challenge to America to end the scourge of slavery and to restore the original dream of equality for all, has been on a long, arduous and difficult journey. Yet, the arrival, to this place, at this time in our nation’s history, gives us hope that “all will yet be well” in our pursuit of that more perfect union to which Lincoln was so devoted.

The Abraham Lincoln National Heritage Area, created by Congress this year to preserve and interpret the Lincoln legacy in Illinois, proudly offers congratulations to President-elect Barack Obama on his victory.

It is no small irony his journey to the White House, like Mr. Lincoln’s, began in the shadows of the Old State Capitol in Mr. Lincoln’s hometown of Springfield, Illinois. Lincoln’s voice could still be heard in these results.

We can only imagine Lincoln would be proud of America today.

We wish President-elect Obama every success as he prepares to lead the nation Lincoln so loved.

We hope he will continue to be inspired by the character of the self-made man who has become the most revered President in American history.

We wish him Godspeed as he begins this, his own historic journey.