HOUSE DIVIDED. When he accepted the Republican nomination to the U.S. Senate at Springfield, Ill., on 16 June 1858, Abraham Lincoln paraphrased a sentence from the Bible (Mark 3:25) in order to emphasize his belief that eventually slavery had to be extinguished: "A house divided against itself cannot stand." Lincoln continued, "I believe this government cannot endure permanently half slave and half free. I do not expect the Union to be dissolved—I do not expect the house to fall—but I do expect it will cease to be divided." Lincoln's opponent, Stephen A. Douglas, favored allowing the people of each state to determine whether to allow slavery within their midst.
Theodore M.Whitfield/c. p.