Abraham Lincoln’s First Visit to Hampton Roads

By Anna Gibson Holloway and Jonathan W. White

In April 2016, several members of the board of directors of the Abraham Lincoln Association joined the mayor of Springfield, Illinois, for a visit to U.S.S. Abraham Lincoln, which was undergoing repairs in Newport News, Virginia. The presence of a vessel named after the nation’s 16th president in Hampton Roads is fitting. Lincoln’s most famous visit to the area occurred on February 3, 1865, when he and Secretary of State William H. Seward met with several Confederate leaders for the Hampton Roads Peace Conference. But, in fact, the president had visited the region twice before, in the spring and summer of 1862.

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