When Abe was a farm boy, he used to sit and read with his back against the warm chimney in the family's log cabin. Friends of the family would come to call, but they would finally leave because they couldn't get Abe to respond to their conversation. The boy was so focused on what he was reading that he didn't hear them talking to him. They went away thinking that Abe was very strange, which is understandable when you realize that many of these Midwest farmers couldn't read. They thought Abe should be working in the fields. Reading was unimportant to them. For Abe, reading was exciting because it opened up the world.
Abe Lincoln had many jobs during his lifetime. He was a farmhand, a boat builder, a store clerk, a soldier, a store owner, a postmaster, and a surveyor, but it was reading that brought him to the Congress and the presidency. For years he read law books, walking 20 to 30 miles sometimes to borrow or return them. His reading enabled him to pass the test to receive his law license and opened the door to public office.The Lincoln Library in Springfield, Illinois has a great website to explore many aspects of this amazing man's life and work.
Sign at the circulation desk under Mr. Lincoln's head
Abraham Lincoln Presidental Library Foundation
Our library also has many books to borrow so you too can be a great reader, just like Mr. Lincoln.