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Q: Gettysburg Address Question ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   1 Comment )
Subject: Gettysburg Address Question
Category: Reference, Education and News > General Reference
Asked by: tekiegreg-ga
List Price: $10.00
Posted: 17 Jun 2003 15:46 PDT
Expires: 17 Jul 2003 15:46 PDT
Question ID: 218548
My history textbook quotes that "Before President Lincoln Gave his
Gettysburg Address, a well known orator gave a very long speech before
him" but doesn't give any more data.

So for the answer you must produce:

1) Who this orator was (I tried, can't find anywhere)
2) Some brief biographical data on him including:
a) Birth date
b) Date of death
c) Anything else he might have been famous for (other speeches, etc.)

Clarification of Question by tekiegreg-ga on 17 Jun 2003 15:49 PDT
Just for extra credit, check out the other question I asked for which
needs the EXACT text of that speech.  But that's another question and
another answer :-)
Subject: Re: Gettysburg Address Question
Answered By: omnivorous-ga on 17 Jun 2003 17:14 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Tekiegreg --

Writing from the perspective of the 20th Century, you'll often see
historians describe Lincoln's Gettysburg address as "unremarked" at
the time.  However, it was really the fact that Edward Everett was
invited as the keynote speaker - and that his oration was about 2
hours long - that put the emphasis on Everett's role:
Library of Congress
"The Gettysburg Address" (April 14, 2003)

Thousands of people had flocked to Gettysburg for the dedication of
the national memorial there and Everett used the occasion to depict
the 3-day battle which made famous the landmarks of Cemetery Hill,
Culp's Hill, the Peach Orchard,  Round Top (and Little Round Top),
Seminary Ridge and Wolf Hill.

Both Lincoln's and Everett's speeches were quoted verbatim in the New
York Times (and other leading newspapers) on Nov. 20, 1863.  The Times
headlines are:

A Solemn and Imposing Event.
Dedication of the National Cemetery at Gettysburgh.
Oration by Hon. Edward Everett - Speeches of President Lincoln, Mr.
Seward and Governor Seymour.

There's no need to repeat Lincoln's words here but the Times account
notes that there are applause 4 times in the brief Address, with "long
continued applause" at the end.  That was followed by three cheers for
the President and governors.

What probably helped as much as anything to cement Lincoln's
Gettysburg Address in national memory was the exchange between Everett
and Lincoln after the event.  Everett praises the "eloquent simplicity
& appropriateness" of the President's remarks. "I should be glad, if I
could flatter myself that I came as near to the central idea of the
occasion, in two hours, as you did in two minutes."

Lincoln's response is here:
Abraham Lincoln online
"Letter to Edward Everett"


Edward Everett (April 11, 1794 - January 15, 1865) was a college
professor, Unitarian clergyman and one-time Secretary of State.  He
graduated from Harvard at the top of his class in 1811, then went on
to gain his Ph.D. in Germany.  He returned to teach at Harvard in 1819
and was editor of the North American Review.  (One of his students at
Harvard was Ralph Waldo Emerson, who was an ardent admirer of his
intellectual abilities.)  During this period he became known for
integrating German university training into American universities.  It
wasn't until the post-Civil War period that masters and Ph.D. level
programs came into U.S. universities:

A speech in August, 1824 in which Lafayette was present helped make
his reputation as an orator.  Following the Phi Beta Kappa oration,
the audience sat rapt for some time - then burst into tumultuous
applause.  Everett was elected to Congress for 5 consecutive terms
shortly after.
He was involved in national affairs throughout the coming decades,
including serving as Secretary of State for 4 months under Millard

He continued to be in demand because of his speaking skills, in
particular with a speech on the character of George Washington, which
he gave more than 125 times.  Everett used the speech in the pre-Civil
War period to advocate preserving the Union that Washington had made

It took 4 volumes to cover his academic and Civil War speeches when
"Orations and Speeches on Various Occasions" was published after the
Civil War.

Google search strategy:
"Edward Everett" + Lincoln
I also used the Gale Biography Resource Center, an online biographical
source at my local library.
Finally, I wanted to check the original records, so used Proquest
Historical Newspapers collection (a fee-based service often available
a major libraries) to see what the headlines said in the New York
Times on Nov. 20, 1863.

I see my colleague Scriptor has handled the text of the Everett

Best regards,

tekiegreg-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $2.00
Overload....Data coming out of my ears!!!! RUN!!!! Seriously tanx :-)

Subject: Re: Gettysburg Address Question
From: omnivorous-ga on 17 Jun 2003 19:53 PDT
Tekiegreg --

LOL -- I actually knew who the orator was when you posted the
question.  But I enjoyed the research because I really didn't know
much about Edward Everett.  Nonetheless, Edward Everett Horton (an
actor who did 'Fractured Fairy Tales' and other Rocky & Bullwinkle
cartoons) always carried the sound that I imagined Edward Everett
would have.

Life must have been so different in those days: when people attended
public speeches and public executions for amusement.  When parlor
entertainment centered around the musical talents of those in the
room. . .

Thanks for the extra sum and kind rating.

Best regards,


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