“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Jacksonville in Morgan County, Illinois — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)

Lincoln's Religion

Looking for Lincoln

Lincoln's Religion Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Beverly Pfingsten, June 10, 2012
1. Lincoln's Religion Marker
Abraham Lincoln was often accused by his detractors---and even by some of his friends---of not being a Christian.
Just before becoming President, Lincoln shared the following with his friend Dr. Newton Bateman: "I know there is a God, and that He hates injustice and slavery. I see the storm coming, and I know that His hand is in it. If He has a place and work for me---and I think He has---I believe I am ready. I am nothing, but truth is everything. I know that I am right because I know that liberty is right, for Christ teaches it, and Christ is God. I have told them that a house divided against itself cannot stand, and Christ and reason say the same; and they will find it so. (Stephen) Douglas don't care whether slavery is voted up or voted down, but God cares, and humanity cares, and I care; and with God's help I shall not fail. I may not see the end; but it will come, and I shall be vindicated; and these men will find that they have not read their Bibles aright."

Dr. Newton Bateman was serving as Superintendent of Public Instruction for the State of Illinois when Abraham Lincoln was nominated for

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President in June 1860. From that time until Lincoln left for Washington to assume his duties in February 1861, he used the Executive Chamber in the Capitol Building as his office and almost daily borrowed Dr. Bateman's adjoining office for the overflow crowd. Lincoln generally introduced Dr. Bateman to his callers as follows:
"This is my little friend, and big schoolmaster of Illinois."

Illinois College was central to the life of Dr. Bateman. Bateman first met Lincoln in 1842 while he was a student at I.C. In 1843, Bateman helped found Sigma Pi Society, an I.C. fraternal-literary group, which made Lincoln an honorary member. Bateman served as teacher and principal in schools in the St. Louis area. In 1851, he returned to Jacksonville, where he married and continued as a school principal. He bought the house on this site in 1851 and expanded it over the years. The Gothic Revival structure is a most unusual survivor of that early period. Dr. Bateman served five terms as Superintendent of Public Instruction for the State of Illinois, beginning in 1859, shortly after he moved to Springfield. From 1875 to 1893, he was president of Knox College in Galesburg, building that institution into one of the great midwestern colleges.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Churches & Religion

Lincoln's Religion Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Beverly Pfingsten, June 10, 2012
2. Lincoln's Religion Marker
Education. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #16 Abraham Lincoln, and the Looking for Lincoln series lists. A significant historical month for this entry is February 1861.
Location. 39° 44.057′ N, 90° 14.524′ W. Marker is in Jacksonville, Illinois, in Morgan County. Marker is on West State Street just west of Westminster Street, on the left when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Jacksonville IL 62650, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Lincoln & Governor Duncan (approx. 0.4 miles away); I. C. Honors Mr. Lincoln (approx. 0.4 miles away); William Jennings Bryan (approx. 0.6 miles away); The Farmers State Bank and Trust Company (approx. 0.6 miles away); 1858 Senate Race Here (approx. 0.7 miles away); Lincoln and Slavery (approx. 0.7 miles away); New Method Book Bindery (approx. 0.7 miles away); Potawatami Indians (approx. 0.7 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Jacksonville.
Dr. Newton Bateman image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Beverly Pfingsten, June 10, 2012
3. Dr. Newton Bateman
Courtesy of Illinois College
Credits. This page was last revised on August 2, 2020. It was originally submitted on July 20, 2012, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. This page has been viewed 557 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on July 20, 2012, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland.

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Mar. 1, 2024