Have you ever heard of Horace Greeley? He was an interesting person in history. He helped Lincoln get into office and later ran for president himself.
Horace Greeley was a man of his word who, in a time when street corner philosophers were common, was America’s pre-eminent street corner philosopher. How Greeley came to have such a prominent voice and such immense influence on public opinion is at the least an extraordinary curiosity. He had a prodigious memory from childhood, an overweening ambition and developed a remarkable debating prowess at a young age. When he was only 15, his reputation as a wordsmith with a biting wit drew crowds to the East Poultney Green where he would engage adults in debate on every manner of subject. Unlike journalism from the early twentieth century on, local newspapers through most of the nineteenth century felt free to hazard views on issues of war and peace, emancipation, women’s suffrage and the wisdom of building canals and railroads across the country. By his mid-twenties, Greeley would rise above the crowded field of journalism and assume editorship of the New York Tribune. Click here to learn more.