Lincoln, Abraham, Mother of

Nancy Hanks Lincoln (1784–1818) was born in Hampshire County, Virginia, to Lucy Hanks. Nothing is known for certain about her father. Nancy grew up in Kentucky, and became a skilled seamstress known for her work ethic, neatness, cheerfulness, and intelligence. She married Thomas Lincoln, a carpenter, on June 12, 1806. They had three children: Sarah, Abraham, and Thomas, who died in infancy. Nancy was a loving mother with many ambitions for her children. She encouraged reading, especially when young Abraham showed a preference for books over farm work. Later, Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of the United States, credited his mother with “all that I am, or ever hope to be.”

A 1963 portrait of Nancy Hanks Lincoln, owned and displayed at the Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial ...

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