Monday March 4, 1861
Inauguration day, March 4, 1861, began drearily, with sharp, chilly winds out of the northwest and a few drops of rain. But by noon, the sun shone brightly, though the air remained cold. The outgoing president, James Buchanan, accompanied Lincoln on the traditional carriage ride up Pennsylvania Avenue to Capitol Hill.
The ceremony took place on a flag-draped platform constructed at the east portico of the Capitol. Security was tight; guards and troops were everywhere, and the building itself had been carefully searched.
VIDEO: Inaugural Address (6.3 MB)
Bibliography: Oates, Malice Toward None, pp. 235-37;
Nevins, Emergence of Lincoln, 2: 457-59; Nicolay and Hay,
Lincoln, 3: 324-27.