7.4/10
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Abe Lincoln in Illinois (1940)

Humble Abraham Lincoln gains the respect of his Illinois neighbors, growing in stature and respect until he is elected President in 1860 and departs for Washington.

Director:

John Cromwell

Writers:

Robert E. Sherwood (by), Robert E. Sherwood (screen play) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Raymond Massey ... Abe Lincoln
Gene Lockhart ... Stephen Douglas
Ruth Gordon ... Mary Todd Lincoln
Mary Howard ... Ann Rutledge
Minor Watson ... Joshua Speed
Alan Baxter ... Billy Herndon
Harvey Stephens ... Ninian Edwards
Howard Da Silva ... Jack Armstrong (as Howard da Silva)
Dorothy Tree ... Elizabeth Edwards
Aldrich Bowker ... Judge Bowling Green
Maurice Murphy ... John McNeil
Louis Jean Heydt ... Mentor Graham
Clem Bevans ... Ben Mattling
Harlan Briggs ... Denton Offut
Herbert Rudley ... Seth Gale
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Storyline

Biopic of Abe Lincoln, 16th President of he United States, from his early days in backwoods Kentucky to his election as President. After a time running livestock to New Orleans, he settles in New Salem where he meets and falls in love with Ann Rutledge who is already engaged to someone. Abe makes a home for himself in New Salem, eventually running a store and becoming the postmaster. He's popular with the locals and is eventually elected to the State legislature but afterward established himself in the practice of law. He eventually meets Mary Todd who would become his wife and and is sent to Washington as a Congressman before he is elected president. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 April 1940 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Abraham Lincoln See more »

Filming Locations:

Eugene, Oregon, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Second-in-command to Robert E. Lee when he led the detachment that captured John Brown was Lieutenant James Ewell Brown "Jeb" Stuart. When both joined the Confederacy during the Civil War, Stuart became Lee's most trusted cavalry commander and Lee referred to him as his "eyes and ears." See more »

Goofs

The Lincolns arrive at the Springfield Depot while a band is playing "The Battle Cry of Freedom". The song was written in 1862, a year after Lincoln was inaugurated as president. See more »

Quotes

Abraham Lincoln: You know, when you're distressed about somethin' it's a comfort sometimes even to have a pair of ears to pour your troubles into and my ears are big enough to hold a lot.
Ann Rutledge: You're a Christian gentleman, Abe Lincoln.
Abraham Lincoln: No, I ain't, I'm a plain common sucker with a shirttail so short I can't set on it.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hollywood or Bust (1956) See more »

Soundtracks

The Men of the West
(uncredited)
Traitional Irish marching song
Lyrics latter written by Willianm Rooney in 1900.
Melody with different lyrics heard at campaign rall
See more »

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User Reviews

Holds up pretty well
1 January 2003 | by nosoapradioSee all my reviews

Episodic recounting of Lincoln's life up to the Presidency. Written by Robert Sherwood, one of FDR's speechwriters. Good performances by Ruth Gordon, Alan Baxter, Howard DaSilva, Clem Bevans.

Massey is the definitive movie Lincoln. Excellent work, emotional range and depth. Much better than Henry Fonda, whose Lincoln was apparently in some kind of trance.

May seem a little dated to modern audiences; occasionally strives for emotional poignancy that now comes across as somewhat corny.

Lots of little details, good depictions of frontier life, political campaigns in the 1800's. Includes two of Lincoln's best speeches from that period, with Massey's performance very close to Lincoln's 19th century oratorical style.

Highly recommended to students of American history and fans of old movies.


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