"My friends - No one, not in my situation, can appreciate my feeling of sadness at this parting. To this place, and the kindness of these people, I owe everything." An emotional Abraham Lincoln opened his farewell remarks to the citizens of Springfield, Illinois with these words on February 11, 1861. Lincoln was leaving his friends and neighbors of twenty-four years, and the home that he and his family had lived in for seventeen years, to serve as president of a nation on the verge of Civil War.
The Lincoln home, the centerpiece of the Lincoln Home National Historic Site, has been restored to its 1860s appearance, revealing Lincoln as husband, father, politician, and President-elect. It stands in the midst of a four block historic neighborhood which the National Park Service is restoring so that the neighborhood, like the house, will appear much as Lincoln would have remembered it.