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"...His Truth is Marching On..."


The main title of this dramatic play, "...His Truth is Marching On..." was derived from Julia Ward Howe's stirring, "Battle Hymn of the Republic." Howe penned the inspirational lyrics to this song after attending a U.S. Army troop review, where she heard a contingent of Union troops singing "John Brown's Body." Although irreverent, the original words to the song underscored fiery abolitionist John Brown's successful exploitation of the means to reinvent himself as a "martyr of liberty," in the wake of his arrest, trial, conviction and execution, for attempting to lead a slave revolt at Harper's Ferry, VA., on October 16, 1859.

The issue of abolishing slavery, as thrust into the national consciousness by John Brown's militant actions at Harper's Ferry, haunted Abraham Lincoln throughout his nomination, election and term as the nation's chief executive. Brown's "truth" was that violence was justified to bring about social change. Lincoln abhorred violence, believing that reason and the rule of law were the only means of sustaining lasting reform of the social order. The audience is left to ponder, whose "truth" does it subscribe to?

2010 marks the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln's election to the U.S. presidency, on November 6, 1860. As the play makes clear, Lincoln's successful nomination and election to the nation's highest office was not a foregone conclusion. Rather, only an extraordinary set of circumstances enabled Lincoln to become President. The 1860 presidential election represented the triumph of democracy in the world, through the selection of a true "man of the people." However; it also precipitated a sectional crisis that soon led to the bloodiest war this nation has ever known. Today, America is once again "a house divided against itself". It will not stand, unless we learn the lessons of history, to avoid repeating the same mistakes of our ancestors. It is hoped this play will both invoke the "mystic chords of memory," and bring forth, "the better angels of our nature."

ISBN: 978-0-9794940-6-2
Publish Date:
Pages: 42
Size: 11 x 8.5 x .2 inches