Homestead Act of 1862: America’s Grandest Privatization Act

On May 20, 1862, President Lincoln signed perhaps the greatest privatization act in American history into law, opening 270 million acres of Western lands for private and family settlement, and dispensing to American citizens ten percent of the entire area of the United States. From 1871 to 1951, 1,505,405 homestead patents were processed, and the Homestead Act provided land in the American West until its repeal in 1976. Although distinctly a political act of war, the Homestead Act encouraged the American dream of personal responsibility and right to property independent of government for over one hundred years.  Read more on Landmarks of Liberty

E. Wesley – Mackinac Center Intern

The Gettysburg Address

More than 51,000 Union and Confederate solders fell in the Battle of Gettysburg from July 1, 2, and 3, 1863, in what is the bloodiest battle in the North American continent.  President Lincoln only spoke for two minutes, yet his message is one of the most endearing speeches in all US history. As commander-in-chief, Lincoln’s military might was unmatched on the continent, but as a man, his life was outweighed by the death of 51,000 others.  Read more on Landmarks of Liberty

E. Wesley – Mackinac Center Intern