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1930s & Earlier / Gettysburg Address
On November 19, 1863, the National Military Cemetery in Gettyburg, Pennsylvania was officially dedicated. The Battle of Gettysburg lasted three days, from July 1 to 3, 1863. Some 150,000 men engaged in the Civil War's most important engagement--and some 50,000 of them became casualties. Edward Everett, a famed orator, was the keynote speaker at the dedication ceremony five months later. He spoke for two hours. President Abraham Lincoln was invited--almost as an afterthought--to make a few appropriate remarks. He followed Everett and spoke for just two minutes. Lincoln's brief speech remains the most stirring in American history.