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Lincoln's Sanctuary: Abraham Lincoln and the Soldiers' Home
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Lincoln's Sanctuary: Abraham Lincoln and the Soldiers' Home

3.8  ·  Rating Details ·  112 Ratings  ·  18 Reviews
After the heartbreaking death of his son Willie, Abraham Lincoln and his family fled the gloom that hung over the White House, moving into a small cottage in Washington, D.C., on the grounds of the Soldiers' Home, a residence for disabled military veterans. In Lincoln's Sanctuary, historian Matthew Pinsker offers a fascinating portrait of Lincoln's stay in this cottage and ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published April 1st 2005 by Oxford University Press, USA (first published 2003)
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Dec 19, 2014 Dsinglet rated it really liked it
I picked this book up at the Lincoln Museum in Springfield not expecting much. It turned out to be very well researched and written . It gives great insight into Lincoln as a person as opposed to the usual history of his political career. He and his family spent three summers living at a country cottage on the acreage of the Soldiers Home. Mary was reeling from the death of their beloved son Willy and wanted somewhere quiet to recover.They wanted to escape the heat and busyness of the White ...more
Sep 02, 2014 Scott rated it really liked it
Shelves: lincoln-books
This is one of those gems of a book that offers the kind of intimate look at Lincoln that almost makes you feel like he is sitting in the room there with you. I highly recommend it, and I highly recommend a visit to the newly-restored Soldiers' Home in Washington, DC.
Oct 01, 2016 Kim rated it liked it
I have read many books on Lincoln, considering him one of the most fascinating of all humans. This book seemed to promise a new perspective, and to some degree it did; but very much of the material was a re-hash of other books that chronicle the days of his presidency. I found the parts of the book that speak specifically of the time spent at the Soldier's Home, and how those times influenced both his personal and family life, well worth reading. But too many of the paths this book led me down ...more
Jun 30, 2013 Cornmaven rated it it was amazing
Shelves: adult, non-fiction
The importance of place and surroundings is Pinsker's overarching theme as he traces the months that Lincoln and his family lived at a cottage on the Soldiers' Home grounds from 1862-1864, totaling a significant portion of his time in office.

As a "commuter" during those months, Lincoln could form ideas and formulate plans unlike someone who just moves from one room to another in a big house. He was face to face with the effects of war, with the military cemetery right outside his door. He also p
Jan 26, 2014 Will rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a very interesting read. Professor Pinsker uses a detective's skill to unearth many nuggets of information about Lincoln's life at his "vacation White House," the cottage at the Soldier's Home.

He is able to pull information from books, letters, memoirs from many different people, from private soldiers to Vice President Hannibal Hamlin to portray what Lincoln and his family thought and did there for three summers.

If there is a flaw in the book, it is the fact that the author is one of th
Mar 31, 2014 Christina rated it really liked it
There are so many Lincoln biographies it is hard to keep track of them all... who is the real Lincoln? Pinsker offered a more intimate and unique look into Lincoln's life and his family's compared to previous biographies I have read. He used the historical monument of Lincoln's Cottage and Soldiers' Home to reveal a different side of Lincoln and his family during the summers of 1862-1864 than previously seen in biographies. I was assigned this book as a reading prior to our grad class' visit to ...more
Chesapeake Bae
Fascinating addendum to the prolific narratives on Lincoln's presidency. The author successfully highlights the importance of daily life - the route of one's daily commute, a day of the week, location of a meeting, and closeness or distance of family members. Each of these aspects of daily life had an impact on Lincoln, helping shape a state of mind that promoted growth as leader of our young nation (perhaps even helping him develop his policy of emancipation). He wasn't the last to bring work ...more
Bill Powers
Nov 25, 2013 Bill Powers rated it it was amazing
Shortly after reading Lincoln's Sanctuary, I had an opportunity to visit and spend a day at the Soldier's Home. If you have a love of American/Civil War era history, I highly recommend.

After the heartbreaking death of his son Willie, Abraham Lincoln and his family fled the gloom that hung over the White House, moving into a small cottage in Washington, D.C., on the grounds of the Soldiers' Home, a residence for disabled military veterans. In Lincoln's Sanctuary, historian Matthew Pinsker offers
Jul 11, 2016 Gail rated it liked it
Lincoln and his family spent summers at a house on the grounds of a wounded soldier's retirement home. It was a lovely wooded location, but an easy 30 minute commute to the White House. His time there allowed him to relax a little, though he still met many visitors and read and wrote important speeches and documents while there. This short book focused on his personal life, his interactions with the soldiers who guarded him and the the people he interacted with during his commute and his ...more
Eleanor Potter
Oct 11, 2007 Eleanor Potter rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Lincoln lovers.
I'm writing a short biography on the life of my grandmother, Geraldine Rossell, right now. So, I'm reading some biographies to get some ideas of how to go about this task.

In Lincoln's Sanctuary, Matthew Pinsker aimed to prove that the atmosphere of Abe Lincoln's summer home had a great effect on the presidency and therefore, the war.

I think it was more of a cool insight into Lincoln as he wore his slippers and invited friends over for relaxation and entertainment. Did you know he used to read Sh
Sep 15, 2015 Glesnertod rated it did not like it
Shelves: biography
For someone who has little to no desire to learn about the casual conversations Lincoln had while en route between the white house and the soldiers home, it was OK. I found the discipline used in relaying the an accurate representation of Lincoln's experiences at the soldiers home to be what I expect basically what I expect of a historian. Probably because I am not familiar with the historical inaccuracies that have been elaborated on in years past, I don't know how the author stands in contrast ...more
Chelsey Ortega
Nov 24, 2015 Chelsey Ortega rated it liked it
Matthew Pinsker takes a look at Lincoln's life and the Civil War through the lens of the Summer months in a Summer home that the Lincoln family stayed in every summer during his presidency up until his death. It is quite an interesting angle, but because I don't love the Civil War, I didn't love the book, but I enjoyed it.
Instead of retyping here, I'm posting the link to the review on my blog.
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