President Lincoln’s Cottage
U.S. presidents have long enjoyed summer homes—places where they could retreat from the politics and the heat of Washington D.C. for a few weeks or months. Lincoln’s Cottage was a special place for the Lincoln family.
- President Lincoln’s Cottage was built in 1842-1843 and was originally owned by George Washington Riggs, founder of the Riggs National Bank.
- It is located in Brookland, near Washington D.C. and sits on 251 acres, part of the Soldier’s Home, which was later renamed the Armed Forces Retirement Home.
- The home was previously used as a summer White House by President James Buchanan.
- Lincoln and his family stayed here from June to November each year, 1862 to 1864.
- President Lincoln wrote the first draft of the Emancipation Proclamation, the document that declared all people (including enslaved African Americans) free.
- The poet Walt Whitman wrote that he often saw President Lincoln riding his horse from the White House to the cottage. Whitman said that Lincoln dressed rather plainly and appeared as any ordinary man. Lincoln often greeted Whitman cordially, although Whitman said the president always had a slightly sad look in his eye.
- The cottage was restored in 2007 and open to the public in 2008. Visitors enjoy its Gothic Revival Style and the displays of Lincoln’s writings and possessions.
- Draft: a version, usually of written material; the first draft is the first version, which will then be revised and edited
- Cordial: friendly, gracious
Questions and Answers
Question: What was the home used for after Lincoln’s death?
Answer: Two more presidents, Rutherford B. Hayes and Chester A. Arthur, used it as a summer home too.
Visit the official website of President Lincoln’s Cottage.
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Tobin, Declan. (2020). President Lincoln’s Cottage - American History for Kids. American History for Kids. Retrieved from https://www.americanhistoryforkids.com/president-lincolns-cottage/