National Geographic : 1952 Feb
184 National Geograplic liotograpner vi11arl it. IU ver Reverent Visitors Commune with the Martyred President in His Washington Memorial Lincoln looks out on the Washington Monument and the Capitol. Directly across the Potomac stands Arlington House, Virginia home of the Confederacy's Robert E. Lee. Arlington Memorial Bridge connects memorial and mansion and symbolizes the North-South Union which Lincoln saved. he ever owned; in it he passed the greater part of his married life with Mary Todd Lincoln, and there his four boys-"the dear codgers" -were raised, all but one to die before be coming adults. Lincoln Home Preserves Favorite Rocker Judith's Lincoln feeling was registering very high as we filed through the house with other visitors (page 176). The great man's favorite rocking chair is one of many homey touches in the State-maintained house. Though Abraham Lincoln is said to walk the streets of Springfield at midnight, we found the city too big and bustling and mod ern for ghosts. Many Springfieldians seemed little more conscious of Lincoln than the aver age Washingtonian is of George Washington. However, the massive tomb (pages 162, 179, and 180) north of town is a constant re minder to native and visitor alike of greatness that once lived near by and now, dead of an assassin's bullet, is come home to rest. Having followed the mortal trace of Abra ham Lincoln from the cradle to the grave, my family and I turned sorrowfully to leave Springfield. On the capitol grounds the An drew O'Connor statue of the immortal Ameri can attracted us. Behind it a granite slab repeats Lincoln's simple, prayerful words of farewell to his Springfield neighbors upon his 1861 departure for Washington to take up the problems of an impending civil war: My friends: No one, not in my situation, can ap preciate my feeling of sadness at this parting. To this place, and the kindness of these people, I owe everything. Here I have lived a quarter of a cen tury, and have passed from a young to an old man. Here my children have been born, and one is buried. I now leave, not knowing when or whether ever I may return, with a task before me greater than that which rested upon Washington. Without the assist ance of that Divine Being who ever attended him, I cannot succeed. With that assistance, I cannot fail. Trusting in Him who can go with me, and remain with you, and be everywhere for good, let us confi dently hope that all will yet be well. To His care commending you, as I hope in your prayers you will commend me, I bid you an affectionate farewell.