Abraham Lincoln - Mary Todd Lincoln

"Mary Todd Lincoln", Wife of Abraham Lincoln, OSU.edu, Fair Use.

The first stand-off between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas came when they both were introduced to the same young woman—Mary Todd. She was the daughter of a wealthy Kentucky banking family and the most-popular of the belles in Springfield.

Lincoln, reportedly, surprised himself with his feelings for Mary. He had, after all, resigned himself to never falling in love again. 

All of Mary’s friends thought that Stephen Douglas would be her obvious choice, as he was from a refined, well-to-do family. But Mary fell in love with Abraham and, over the protests of her family, the two became engaged in 1841.

Lincoln seemed to love Mary, but he was filled with insecurities. He knew that his poverty would make her miserable, and all her friends were telling Mary that she would ruin her life by marrying him. 

Abraham feared they were right and fell into another deep depression which so paralyzed him that he broke-off the engagement.

A few months later, one of Abraham’s closest friends overcame his own fears of marriage and informed Abraham that he was “the happiest of men." Abraham began to reconsider his decision.

Not long after, he met Mary at a party (by accident, not by design). This time they both talked through his fears of marriage, and love won out. Abe and Mary had a wedding in 1842.

As Lincoln had feared, a life of poverty was indeed harsh for Mary. Raised in a house full of servants, she now had to make a home—and "make do"—in a small lodging room.  She was often alone, as Lincoln was away for weeks as a legislator and circuit-riding lawyer. 

By their first anniversary, the Lincolns had a son—Robert Todd Lincoln—and, in the midst of all the hardship, they realized something significant:  They remained in love. Working very hard, Lincoln was soon able to purchase a new home for his family.

Over the next few years, Abe and Mary had two more sons: Edward ("Eddie") and William ("Willie"). Neither of these two lads would reach their teenaged years.

Original Release: Mar 22, 2017

Updated Last Revision: May 10, 2017

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"Mary Todd Lincoln" AwesomeStories.com. Mar 22, 2017. Feb 17, 2020.
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