The Lincoln-Douglas Debates: The First Complete, Unexpurgated Text

By Harold Holzer | Go to book overview

THE THIRD JOINT
DEBATE AT
JONESBORO

Wednesday, September 15, 1858


•THE SCENE•

THEY CALLED THE REGION Egypt—perhaps because the throat of land here that jutted into the confluence of the Ohio and Mississippi rivers looked so much like the Nile Delta; possibly because its old Indian mounds resembled pyramids; or maybe only because its best-known town was named Cairo. No one knows for sure. What was indisputable, however, was that this was anything but Lincoln country—a bastion of pro-slavery, negrophobic sentiment nesded in rural isolation between two slave states, Kentucky and Missouri. Chicago was a distant 300 miles away, but the South was just across the river. And as historian Mark E. Neely, Jr., has pointed out, when Republican John C. Fremont ran for president in these precincts two years earlier, his electors failed to win even four percent of the vote.

Here, Douglas had boasted up north, was where he most eagerly looked forward to trotting down Lincoln and his so-called abolition doctrine. Here was where he would bring his opponent “to his

-136-

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The Lincoln-Douglas Debates: The First Complete, Unexpurgated Text
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents ix
  • Preface to the Fordham University Press Edition xi
  • Preface xix
  • Acknowledgements xxiii
  • Introduction 1
  • A Word on the Texts 34
  • The First Joint Debate at Ottawa 40
  • The Second Joint Debate at Freeport 86
  • The Third Joint Debate at Jonesboro 136
  • The Fourth Joint Debate at Charleston 185
  • The Fifth Joint Debate at Galesburg 234
  • The Sixth Joint Debate at Quincy 277
  • The Seventh Joint Debate at Alton 321
  • Appendix - Lincoln vs. Douglas- How the State Voted 371
  • Notes 375
  • Index 383
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