A leaked photo of actor Daniel Day-Lewis on the set of an upcoming Steven Spielberg-directed biopic of Abraham Lincoln appeared on Twitter today, 149 years following one of his most monumental speeches.
On this day in 1862, President Abraham Lincoln delivered his address to Congress on the liberation of enslaved African-Americans. The speech came 10 weeks after Lincoln’s issuing of the Emancipation Proclamation, which declared all slaves free in any of the Confederate states as of January 1, 1863. Receiving some push back from conservative democrats, Lincoln addressed past ‘dogmas’ and ‘present storms’.
“Fellow-citizens, we cannot escape history. We of this Congress and this administration will be remembered in spite of ourselves. No personal significance, or insignificance, can spare one or another of us. The fiery trial through which we pass, will light us down, in honor or dishonor, to the latest generation. We say we are for the Union. The world will not forget that we say this. We know how to save the Union. The world knows we do know how to save it. We — even we here — hold the power, and bear the responsibility. In giving freedom to the slave, we assure freedom to the free — honorable alike in what we give, and what we preserve. We shall nobly save, or meanly lose, the last best hope of earth. Other means may succeed; this could not fail. The way is plain, peaceful, generous, just — a way which, if followed, the world will forever applaud, and God must forever bless.”
In the upcoming flick Day-Lewis will portray the Civil War president and his fight for freedom. The film will also star Sally Field as Mary Todd Lincoln, Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Robert Todd Lincoln, Tommy Lee Jones as Thaddeus Stevens and John Hawkes as Robert Latham.