York Town Square

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York countians, newspaper no friend of Abraham Lincoln

In a recent speech marking the anniversary of the Gettysburg Address, author and historian Gabor Boritt suggested that only a handful of newspapers recognized the greatness of Abraham Lincoln’s speech.

Well, The York Gazette, the leading publication in York County, certainly was not in that hand… .

The Democrat newspaper, a consistent Lincoln foe, ran two reports on the speech.
A brief dispatch on the address reprinted from The Age stated that “Mr. Lincoln made a joke or two … .”
The Democrat newspaper from Philadelphia concluded its report with the statement: “With the groans of the wounded still resounding in the air — the corpses of the slain still unburied — the bereaved still clad in the emblems of mourning, and their tears still flowing — these men meet to laugh and joke and electioneer.”
The Gazette’s own report was a bit more charitable than The Age, but didn’t get the greatness of the speech.
The York newspaper observed that the president appropriately performed the dedication.
The Age’s view mirrored the majority report in York County in those days.
In the 1860 and 1864 elections, county voters backed Lincoln’s opponents.

Edited, 11/14/13