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Tue, 11/19/2013 - 9:00pm

Lincoln writing the Gettysburg address at David Wills house.

Credit: Courtesy of Tristan Walker

Learn how Lincoln exerted control through the telegraph and its effect on the Gettysburg Address. 

In 1863, Abraham Lincoln proved himself a master of a new frontier — not on the battlefields of the Civil War, but in his high-tech command center: the War Department Telegraph Office. The internet of the 19th century, the telegraph gave Lincoln new powers to reshape leadership and wield personal control across distant battlefields. It also connected him to the country in new ways, as information poured in, and allowed him to feel the pulse of the country faster than before. The results of Lincoln’s pioneering experiment in communication led to the rebirth of America on the fields of Gettysburg … both in the battle that turned the tide of the Civil War and in the few words that recast the American ideal as a national creed: the Gettysburg Address. [email protected] airs Tuesday, November 19, 2013 at 9 p.m. on WXXI-TV.