A Stranger At Five-points

: Good Stories For Great Holidays


One afternoon in February, 1860, when the Sunday School of the

Five-Point House of Industry in New York was assembled, the teacher

saw a most remarkable man enter the room and take his place among the

others. This stranger was tall, his frame was gaunt and sinewy, his head

powerful, with determined features overcast by a gentle melancholy.

He listened with fixed attention to the ex
rcises. His face expressed

such genuine interest that the teacher, approaching him, suggested that

he might have something to say to the children.

The stranger accepted the invitation with evident pleasure. Coming

forward, he began to speak and at once fascinated every child in the

room. His language was beautiful yet simple, his tones were musical, and

he spoke with deep feeling.

The faces of the boys and girls drooped sadly as he uttered warnings,

and then brightened with joy as he spoke cheerful words of promise. Once

or twice he tried to close his remarks, but the children shouted: "Go

on! Oh! do go on!" and he was forced to continue.

At last he finished his talk and was leaving the room quietly when the

teacher begged to know his name.

"Abra'm Lincoln, of Illinois," was the modest response.