Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation

Michael C Gallaga

Michael C. Gallaga Mr. Lincoln and Me When my first grade class celebrated Abraham Lincoln's February twelfth birthday, I didn't know that for me it was the beginning of a lifelong admiration. I was even too young to suspect that my mother's praise of my black construction paper silhouette of the great man may have been an influence. But even at my tender age, I valued my freedom; and my esteem for him may have begun when I learned that he had freed the slaves. Nevertheless, I don't recall when I first became a fervent admirer of Mr. Lincoln, or even when he became my number one idol. But at sometime a fascination with his life grew within me. My desire to learn more about him became stronger as time passed. I began to read any book or publication about him that I could find. I have watched every television production or movie available. I have been entertained, educated and wizened by learning his history, humor, anecdotes and wisdom. I have learned how to improve my writing by studying his. I learned how to be a better leader by examining his methods. Like his little engine of ambition, my interest has no limit. My admiration has become adoration. He has been called by many names: Honest Abe, the Rail-splitter, Commander-In-Chief, The Great Emancipator, Father Abraham and more. But he had no illusion about the humble man that he was. Perhaps his humility was best shown by the simple way he signed his name - A. Lincoln.