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Michael Jordan

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Michael Jordan
Chicago Bulls. Michael Jordan 1997
No. 23, 45, 9
Shooting guard
Personal information
Date of birth February 17, 1963 (1963-02-17) (age 47)
Place of birth Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
High school Emsley A. Laney High School (Wilmington, North Carolina)
Listed height 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m)
Listed weight 215 lb (98 kg)
Career information
College University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
NBA Draft 1984 / Round: 1 / Pick: 3
Selected by the Chicago Bulls
Pro career 1984–2003
League NBA
Career history

* Chicago Bulls (1984–1993, 1995–1998)
* Washington Wizards (2001–2003)

Career highlights and awards

* 6× NBA Champion (1991, 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 1998)
* 5× NBA MVP (1988, 1991, 1992, 1996, 1998)
* 14× NBA All-Star (1985–1993, 1996–1998, 2002–2003)
* 6× NBA Finals MVP (1991–1993, 1996–1998)
* NBA Defensive Player of the Year (1988)
* 10× All-NBA First Team Selection (1987–1993, 1996–1998)
* All-NBA Second Team Selection (1985)
* 9× NBA All-Defensive First Team Selection (1988–1993, 1996–1998)
* 1985 NBA Rookie of the Year
* 1985 NBA All-Rookie Team
* 3× NBA All-Star Game MVP (1988, 1996, 1998)
* 2× NBA Slam Dunk Contest winner (1987, 1988)
* 2× Gold Medal Winner in the Olympics (1984, 1992)
* NBA's 50th Anniversary All-Time Team
* NCAA Men's Basketball Champion (1982)
* 2× Consensus NCAA All-American First Team (1983, 1984)
* 1982 ACC Freshman of the Year
* ACC Men's Basketball Player of the Year (1984)
* USBWA College Player of the Year (1984)
* Naismith College Player of the Year (1984)
* John R. Wooden Award (1984)
* Adolph Rupp Trophy (1984)
* 1991 Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year
* 2000 ESPY Athlete of the Century
* 1990s ESPY Male Athlete Decade Award
* 1990s ESPY Pro Basketballer Decade Award

Career NBA statistics
Points 32,292
Rebounds 6,672
Assists 5,633
Info Page
Stats @ Basketball-Reference.com
Basketball Hall of Fame as player

Michael Jeffrey Jordan (born February 17, 1963) is a retired American professional basketball player, active businessman, and majority owner of the Charlotte Bobcats. His biography on the National Basketball Association (NBA) website states, "By acclamation, Michael Jordan is the greatest basketball player of all time."[1] Jordan was one of the most effectively marketed athletes of his generation and was instrumental in popularizing the NBA around the world in the 1980s and 1990s.

After a standout career at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he led the Tar Heels to a National Championship in 1982, Jordan joined the NBA's Chicago Bulls in 1984. He quickly emerged as a league star, entertaining crowds with his prolific scoring. His leaping ability, illustrated by performing slam dunks from the free throw line in slam dunk contests, earned him the nicknames "Air Jordan" and "His Airness". He also gained a reputation for being one of the best defensive players in basketball.[2] In 1991, he won his first NBA championship with the Bulls, and followed that achievement with titles in 1992 and 1993, securing a "three-peat". Although Jordan abruptly retired from basketball at the beginning of the 1993–94 NBA season to pursue a career in baseball, he rejoined the Bulls in 1995 and led them to three additional championships (1996, 1997, and 1998) as well as an NBA-record 72 regular-season wins in the 1995-96 NBA season. Jordan retired for a second time in 1999, but returned for two more NBA seasons in 2001 as a member of the Washington Wizards.

Jordan's individual accolades and accomplishments include five MVP awards, ten All-NBA First Team designations, nine All-Defensive First Team honors, fourteen NBA All-Star Game appearances, three All-Star Game MVP awards, ten scoring titles, three steals titles, six NBA Finals MVP awards, and the 1988 NBA Defensive Player of the Year Award. He holds the NBA records for highest career regular-season scoring average (30.12 points per game) and highest career playoff scoring average (33.45 points per game). In 1999, he was named the greatest North American athlete of the 20th century by ESPN, and was second to Babe Ruth on the Associated Press's list of athletes of the century. He was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame on April 6, 2009 and was inducted on September 11, 2009.[3]

Jordan is also noted for his product endorsements. He fueled the success of Nike's Air Jordan sneakers, which were introduced in 1985 and remain popular today.[4] Jordan also starred in the 1996 feature film Space Jam as himself. He is the majority owner and head of basketball operations for the NBA's Charlotte Bobcats, Jordan recently won a bidding war to buy controlling interest in the team from founding owner Robert L. Johnson.

Biography
Early years
Michael Jordan's jersey in the rafters of The Dean Smith Center

Jordan was born in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Deloris (née Peoples), who worked in banking, and James R. Jordan, Sr., an equipment supervisor.[5] His family moved to Wilmington, North Carolina, when he was a toddler.[6] Jordan attended Emsley A. Laney High School in Wilmington, where he anchored his athletic career by playing baseball, football, and basketball. He tried out for the varsity basketball team during his sophomore year, but at 5'11" (1.80 m), he was deemed too short to play at that level. His taller friend, Harvest Leroy Smith, was the only sophomore to make the team.[7]

Motivated to prove his worth, Jordan became the star of Laney's junior varsity squad, and tallied several 40 point games.[7] The following summer, he grew four inches (10 cm)[1] and trained rigorously. Upon earning a spot on the varsity roster, Jordan averaged about 20 points per game over his final two seasons of high school play.[8][9] As a senior, he was selected to the McDonald's All-American Team[10] after averaging a triple-double: 29.2 points, 11.6 rebounds, and 10.1 assists.[11]

In 1981, Jordan earned a basketball scholarship to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was a member of Omega Psi Phi and majored in cultural geography. As a freshman in coach Dean Smith's team-oriented system, he was named ACC Freshman of the Year after he averaged 13.4 points per game (ppg) on 53.4% shooting (field goal percentage).[12] He made the game-winning jump shot in the 1982 NCAA Championship game against Georgetown, which was led by future NBA rival Patrick Ewing.[1] Jordan later described this shot as the major turning point in his basketball career.[13] During his three seasons at North Carolina, he averaged 17.7 ppg on 54.0% shooting, and added 5.0 rebounds per game (rpg).[8] He was selected by consensus to the NCAA All-American First Team in both his sophomore (1983) and junior (1984) seasons. After winning the Naismith and the Wooden College Player of the Year awards in 1984, Jordan left North Carolina one year before his scheduled graduation to enter the 1984 NBA Draft. The Chicago Bulls selected Jordan with the third overall pick, after Hakeem Olajuwon (Houston Rockets) and Sam Bowie (Portland Trail Blazers). Jordan returned to North Carolina to complete his degree in 1986.[14]
Basketball career

During his first season in the NBA, Jordan averaged 28.2 ppg on 51.5% shooting.[12] He quickly became a fan favorite even in opposing arenas,[15][16][17] and appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated with the heading "A Star is Born" just over a month into his professional career.[18][19] Jordan was also voted in as an All-Star starter by the fans in his rookie season.[1] Controversy arose before the All-Star game when word surfaced that several veteran players, led by Isiah Thomas, were upset by the amount of attention Jordan was receiving.[1] This led to a so called "freeze-out" on Jordan, where players refused to pass him the ball throughout the game.[1] The controversy left Jordan relatively unaffected when he returned to regular season play, and he would go on to be voted Rookie of the Year.[20] The Bulls finished the season 38–44,[21] and lost in the first round of the playoffs in four games to the Milwaukee Bucks.[20]

Jordan's second season was cut short by a broken foot which caused him to miss 64 games. Despite Jordan's injury and a 30–52 record,[21] the Bulls made the playoffs. Jordan recovered in time to participate in the playoffs and performed well upon his return. Against a 1985–86 Boston Celtics team that is often considered one of the greatest in NBA history,[22] Jordan set the still-unbroken record for points in a playoff game with 63 in Game 2.[23] The Celtics, however, managed to sweep the series.[20]

Jordan had recovered completely by the 1986–87 season, and had one of the most prolific scoring seasons in NBA history. He became the only player other than Wilt Chamberlain to score 3,000 points in a season, averaging a league high 37.1 points on 48.2% shooting.[12] In addition, Jordan demonstrated his defensive prowess, as he became the first player in NBA history to record 200 steals and 100 blocks in a season. Despite Jordan's success, Magic Johnson won the league's Most Valuable Player Award. The Bulls reached 40 wins,[21] and advanced to the playoffs for the third consecutive year. However, they were again swept by the Celtics.[20]
Mid-career: Pistons roadblock

Jordan led the league in scoring again in the 1987–88 season, averaging 35.0 ppg on 53.5% shooting[12] and won his first league MVP award. He was also named the Defensive Player of the Year, as he had averaged 1.6 blocks and a league high 3.16 steals per game.[24] The Bulls finished 50–32,[21] and made it out of the first round of the playoffs for the first time in Jordan's career, as they defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers in five games.[25] However, the Bulls then lost in five games to the more experienced Detroit Pistons,[20] who were led by Isiah Thomas and a group of physical players known as the "Bad Boys".

In the 1988–89 season, Jordan again led the league in scoring, averaging 32.5 ppg on 53.8% shooting from the field, along with 8 rpg and 8 assists per game (apg).[12] The Bulls finished with a 47–35 record,[21] and advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals, defeating the Cleveland Cavaliers and New York Knicks along the way. The Cavaliers series included a career highlight for Jordan when he hit a series-winning shot over Craig Ehlo in the closing moments of the deciding fifth game of the series. However, the Pistons again defeated the Bulls, this time in six games,[20] by utilizing their "Jordan Rules" method of guarding Jordan, which consisted of double and triple teaming him every time he touched the ball.[1]

The Bulls entered the 1989–90 season as a team on the rise, with their core group of Jordan and young improving players like Scottie Pippen and Horace Grant, and under the guidance of new coach Phil Jackson. Jordan averaged a league leading 33.6 ppg on 52.6% shooting, to go with 6.9 rpg and 6.3 apg[12] in leading the Bulls to a 55–27 record.[21] They again advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals beating the Bucks and Philadelphia 76ers en route. However, despite pushing the series to seven games, the Bulls lost to the Pistons for the third consecutive season.[20]
First three-peat

In the 1990–91 season, Jordan won his second MVP award after averaging 31.5 ppg on 53.9% shooting, 6.0 rpg, and 5.5 apg for the regular season.[12] The Bulls finished in first place in their division for the first time in 16 years and set a franchise record with 61 wins in the regular season.[21] With Scottie Pippen developing into an All-Star, the Bulls elevated their play. The Bulls defeated the New York Knicks and the Philadelphia 76ers in the opening two rounds of the playoffs. They advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals where their rival, the Detroit Pistons, awaited them. However, this time when the Pistons employed their "Jordan Rules" defense of doubling and triple teaming Jordan, he picked them apart with passing. Finally, the Bulls beat the Detroit Pistons in a surprising sweep.[26][27] In an unusual ending to the fourth and final game, Isiah Thomas led his team off the court before the final minute had concluded. Most of the Pistons went directly to their locker room instead of shaking hands with the Bulls.[28]

The Bulls compiled an outstanding 15-2 record during the playoffs,[26] and advanced to the NBA Finals for the first time in franchise history, where they beat the Los Angeles Lakers four games to one. Perhaps the best known moment of the series came in Game 2 when, attempting a dunk, Jordan avoided a potential Sam Perkins block by switching the ball from his right hand to his left in mid-air to lay the shot in.[29] The play was the last in a sequence of 13 consecutive field goals made by Jordan. In his first Finals appearance, Jordan posted per game averages of 31.2 points on 56% shooting from the field, 11.4 assists, 6.6 rebounds, 2.8 steals and 1.4 blocks.[30] Jordan won his first NBA Finals MVP award by a unanimous decision,[31] and he cried while holding the NBA Finals trophy.[32]

Jordan and the Bulls continued their dominance in the 1991–92 season, establishing a 67–15 record, topping their franchise record from 1990–91.[21] Jordan won his second consecutive MVP award with a 30.1/6.4/6.1 season on 52% shooting.[24] After winning a physical 7-game series over the burgeoning New York Knicks in the second round of the playoffs and finishing off the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Conference Finals in 6 games, the Bulls met Clyde Drexler and the Portland Trail Blazers in the Finals. The media, hoping to recreate a Magic-Bird rivalry, highlighted the similarities between "Air" Jordan and Clyde "The Glide" during the pre-Finals hype.[33] In the first game, Jordan scored a Finals-record 35 points in the first half, including a record-setting six three-point field goals.[34] After the sixth three-pointer, he jogged down the court shrugging as he looked courtside. Marv Albert, who broadcast the game, later stated that it was as if Jordan was saying, "I can't believe I'm doing this."[35] The Bulls went on to win Game 1, and defeat the Blazers in six games. Jordan was named Finals MVP for the second year in a row[31] and finished the series averaging 35.8 ppg, 4.8 rpg, and 6.5 apg, while shooting 53% from the floor.[31]

In 1992–93, despite a 32.6/6.7/5.5 campaign,[24] Jordan's streak of consecutive MVP seasons ended as he lost the award to his friend Charles Barkley. Fittingly, Jordan and the Bulls met Barkley and his Phoenix Suns in the 1993 NBA Finals. The Bulls captured their third consecutive NBA championship on a game-winning shot by John Paxson and a last-second block by Horace Grant, but Jordan was once again Chicago's catalyst. He averaged a Finals-record 41.0 ppg during the six-game series,[36] and became the first player in NBA history to win three straight Finals MVP awards.[31] He scored more than 30 points in every game of the series, including 40 or more points in 4 consecutive games. With his third Finals triumph, Jordan capped off a seven-year run where he attained seven scoring titles and three championships, but there were signs that Jordan was tiring of his massive celebrity and all of the non-basketball hassles in his life.[37]
Gambling controversy

During the Bulls' playoff run in 1993, controversy arose when Jordan was seen gambling in Atlantic City, New Jersey the night before a game against the New York Knicks.[38] In that same year, he admitted to having to cover $57,000 in gambling losses,[39] and author Richard Esquinas wrote a book claiming he had won $1.25 million from Jordan on the golf course.[39] In 2005, Jordan talked to Ed Bradley of the CBS evening show 60 Minutes about his gambling and admitted that he made some reckless decisions. Jordan stated, "Yeah, I've gotten myself into situations where I would not walk away and I've pushed the envelope. Is that compulsive? Yeah, it depends on how you look at it. If you're willing to jeopardize your livelihood and your family, then yeah."[40] When Bradley asked him if his gambling ever got to the level where it jeopardized his livelihood or family, Jordan replied, "No."[40]
First retirement and baseball career
Michael Jordan while playing with the Scottsdale Scorpions

On October 6, 1993, Jordan announced his retirement, citing a loss of desire to play the game. Jordan later stated that the murder of his father earlier in the year shaped his decision.[41] James R. Jordan, Sr. was murdered on July 23, 1993, at a highway rest area in Lumberton, North Carolina, by two teenagers, Daniel Green and Larry Martin Demery. The assailants were traced from calls they made on James Jordan's cellular phone,[42] caught, convicted, and sentenced to life in prison. Jordan was close to his father; as a child he had imitated his father's proclivity to stick out his tongue while absorbed in work. He later adopted it as his own signature, displaying it each time he drove to the basket.[1] In 1996 he founded a Chicago area Boys & Girls Club and dedicated it to his father.[43][44]

In his 1998 autobiography For the Love of the Game, Jordan wrote that he had been preparing for retirement as early as the summer of 1992.[45] The added exhaustion due to the Dream Team run in the 1992 Olympics solidified Jordan's feelings about the game and his ever-growing celebrity status. Jordan's announcement sent shock waves throughout the NBA and appeared on the front pages of newspapers around the world.[46]

Jordan then further surprised the sports world by signing a minor league baseball contract with the Chicago White Sox. He reported to spring training and was assigned to the team's minor league system on March 31, 1994.[47] Jordan has stated this decision was made to pursue the dream of his late father, who had always envisioned his son as a Major League Baseball player.[48] The White Sox were another team owned by Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf, who continued to honor Jordan's basketball contract during the years he played baseball.[49] He had a brief professional baseball career for the Birmingham Barons, a Chicago White Sox farm team, batting .202 with 3 HR, 51 RBI, 30 SB, and 11 errors.[9] He also appeared for the Scottsdale Scorpions in the 1994 Arizona Fall League.
"I'm back": return to the NBA
Jordan had his jersey retired after his first retirement in 1993. When he returned in 1995 he wore 45. In 1996 he wore his familiar 23 for the rest of his tenure.

In the 1993–94 season, the Jordan-less Bulls notched a 55–27 record,[21] and lost to the New York Knicks in the second round of the playoffs. But the 1994–95 version of the Bulls was a shell of the championship squad of just two years earlier. Struggling at mid-season to ensure a spot in the playoffs, Chicago was 31–31 at one point in mid-March.[50] The team received a lift, however, when Jordan decided to return to the NBA for the Bulls.

On March 18, 1995, Jordan announced his return to the NBA through a pithy press release: "I'm back."[1] The next day, Jordan donned jersey number 45 (his number with the Barons), as his familiar 23 had been retired in his honor following his first retirement. He took to the court with the Bulls to face the Indiana Pacers in Indianapolis, scoring 19 points.[51] The game had the highest Nielsen rating of a regular season NBA game since 1975.[52]

Although he had not played in an NBA game in a year and a half, Jordan played well upon his return, making a game-winning jump shot against Atlanta in his fourth game back and scoring 55 points in a game against the Knicks at Madison Square Garden on March 28, 1995.[20] Boosted by Jordan's comeback, the Bulls made the playoffs and advanced to the Eastern Conference Semi-finals against the Orlando Magic. At the end of the first game of the series, though, Orlando's Nick Anderson would strip Jordan from behind, leading to the game-winning basket for the Magic; he would later comment that Jordan "didn't look like the old Michael Jordan",[53] after which Jordan returned to wearing his old number (23). Jordan averaged 31 points per game in that series, but Orlando prevailed in six games.[8]
Second three-peat
Jordan going in for a slam dunk with his signature exposed tongue.

Freshly motivated by the playoff defeat, Jordan trained aggressively for the 1995–96 season.[54] Strengthened by the addition of rebound specialist Dennis Rodman, the Bulls dominated the league, starting the season 41–3,[55] and eventually finishing with the best regular season record in NBA history: 72–10.[22] Jordan led the league in scoring with 30.4 ppg,[56] and won the league's regular season and All-Star Game MVP awards.[1] In the playoffs, the Bulls lost only three games in four series, defeating the Seattle SuperSonics in the NBA Finals to win the championship. Jordan was named Finals MVP for a record fourth time,[31] surpassing Magic Johnson's three Finals MVP awards. He also achieved only the second sweep of the MVP Awards in the All-Star Game, regular season and NBA Finals, duplicating Willis Reed's feat during the 1969–70 season.[20] Because this was Jordan's first championship since his father's death, and it was won on Father's Day, Jordan reacted very emotionally upon winning the title, including a memorable scene of him sobbing on the locker room floor with the game ball.[1][32]

In the 1996–97 season, the Bulls started out 69–11, but narrowly missed out on a second consecutive 70-win season by losing their final two games to finish 69–13.[57] However, this year Jordan was beaten for the NBA MVP Award by Karl Malone. The team again advanced to the Finals, where they faced Malone and the Utah Jazz. The series against the Jazz featured two of the more memorable clutch moments of Jordan's career. He won Game 1 for the Bulls with a buzzer-beating jump shot. In Game 5, with the series tied 2–2, Jordan played despite being feverish and dehydrated from a stomach virus. In what is known as the "flu game", Jordan scored 38 points including the game-deciding three-pointer with less than a minute remaining.[58] The Bulls won 90-88 and went on to win the series in six games.[57] For the fifth time in as many Finals appearances, Jordan received the Finals MVP award.[31] During the 1997 NBA All-Star Game, Jordan posted the only triple double in All-Star Game history in a victorious effort, however he did not receive the MVP award.

Jordan and the Bulls compiled a 62–20 record in the 1997–98 season.[21] Jordan led the league with 28.7 points per game,[24] securing his fifth regular-season MVP award, plus honors for All-NBA First Team, First Defensive Team and the All-Star Game MVP.[1] The Bulls captured the Eastern Conference Championship for a third straight season, including surviving a grueling seven-game series with Reggie Miller's Indiana Pacers in the Eastern Conference Finals; it was the first time Jordan had played in a Game 7 since the 1992 series with the Knicks. After prevailing, they moved on for a rematch with the Jazz in the Finals.

The Bulls returned to Utah for Game 6 on June 14, 1998 leading the series 3–2. Jordan executed a series of plays, considered to be one of the greatest clutch performances in NBA Finals history.[59] With the Bulls trailing 86–83 with 40 seconds remaining, coach Jackson called a timeout. When play resumed, Jordan received the inbound pass, drove to the basket, and hit a layup over several Jazz defenders.[59] The Jazz brought the ball upcourt and passed the ball to forward Karl Malone, who was set up in the low post and was being guarded by Rodman. Malone jostled with Rodman and caught the pass, but Jordan cut behind him and swatted the ball out of his hands for a steal.[59] Jordan then slowly dribbled upcourt and paused at the top of the key, eyeing his defender, Jazz guard Bryon Russell. With fewer than 10 seconds remaining, Jordan started to dribble right, then crossed over to his left, possibly pushing off Russell,[60][61][62] although the officials did not call a foul. Jordan then released a shot that would be rebroadcast innumerable times in years to come. As the shot found the net, announcer Bob Costas shouted "Chicago with the lead!"[63] After a desperation three-point shot by John Stockton missed, Jordan and the Bulls claimed their sixth NBA championship, and secured a second three-peat. Once again, Jordan was voted the Finals MVP,[31] having led all scorers by averaging 33.5 points per game, including 45 in the deciding Game 6.[64] Jordan's six Finals MVPs is a record; Shaquille O'Neal, Magic Johnson, and Tim Duncan are tied for second place with three apiece.[31] The 1998 Finals holds the highest television rating of any Finals series in history, and Game 6 holds the highest television rating of any game in NBA history.[65][66]
Second retirement
Plaque at the United Center chronicling Jordan's career achievements.

With Phil Jackson's contract expiring, the pending departures of Scottie Pippen (who stated his desire to be traded during the season) and Dennis Rodman (who would sign with the Los Angeles Lakers as a free agent) looming, and being in the latter stages of an owner-induced lockout of NBA players, Jordan retired for the second time on January 13, 1999.

On January 19, 2000, Jordan returned to the NBA not as a player, but as part owner and President of Basketball Operations for the Washington Wizards.[67] He'd earlier made a bid to become part-owner of the Charlotte Hornets, as a full partner of founding owner George Shinn. However, negotiations collapsed when Shinn refused to give Jordan total control of on-court operations.

Jordan's responsibilities with the Wizards were comprehensive. He controlled all aspects of the Wizards' basketball operations, and had the final say in all personnel matters. Opinions of Jordan as a basketball executive were mixed.[68][69] He managed to purge the team of several highly paid, unpopular players (such as forward Juwan Howard and point guard Rod Strickland),[70][71] but used the first pick in the 2001 NBA Draft to select high schooler Kwame Brown, who did not live up to expectations and was traded away after four seasons.[68][72]

Despite his January 1999 claim that he was "99.9% certain" that he would never play another NBA game,[32] in the summer of 2001 Jordan expressed interest in making another comeback,[73][74] this time with his new team. Inspired by the NHL comeback of his friend Mario Lemieux the previous winter,[75] Jordan spent much of the spring and summer of 2001 in training, holding several invitation-only camps for NBA players in Chicago.[76] In addition, Jordan hired his old Chicago Bulls head coach, Doug Collins, as Washington's coach for the upcoming season, a decision that many saw as foreshadowing another Jordan return.[73][74]
Washington Wizards comeback
Jordan as a member of the Washington Wizards on April 14, 2003

On September 25, 2001 Jordan announced his return to professional play with the Wizards, indicating his intention to donate his salary as a player to a relief effort for the victims of the September 11, 2001 attacks.[77][78] In an injury-plagued 2001–02 season, he led the team in scoring (22.9 ppg), assists (5.2 apg), and steals (1.42 spg).[1] However, torn cartilage in his right knee ended Jordan's season after only 60 games, the fewest he had played in a regular season since playing 17 games after returning from his first retirement during the 1994–95 season.[12]

Playing in his 14th and final NBA All-Star Game in 2003, Jordan passed Kareem Abdul-Jabbar as the all-time leading scorer in All-Star game history. That year, Jordan was the only Washington player to play in all 82 games, starting in 67 of them. He averaged 20.0 points, 6.1 rebounds, 3.8 assists, and 1.5 steals per game.[1] He also shot 45% from the field, and 82% from the free throw line.[1] Even though he turned 40 during the season, he scored 20 or more points 42 times, 30 or more points nine times, and 40 or more points three times.[20] On February 21, 2003, Jordan became the first 40-year-old to tally 43 points in an NBA game.[79] During his stint with the Wizards, all of Jordan's home games at the MCI Center were sold out, and the Wizards were the second most-watched team in the NBA, averaging 20,172 fans a game at home and 19,311 on the road.[80] However, neither of Jordan's final two seasons resulted in a playoff appearance for the Wizards, and Jordan was often unsatisfied with the play of those around him.[81][82] At several points he openly criticized his teammates to the media, citing their lack of focus and intensity, notably that of the number one draft pick in the 2001 NBA Draft, Kwame Brown.[81][82]

With the recognition that 2002–03 would be Jordan's final season, tributes were paid to him throughout the NBA. In his final game at his old home court, the United Center in Chicago, Jordan received a four-minute standing ovation.[83] The Miami Heat retired the number 23 jersey on April 11, 2003, even though Jordan had never played for the team.[84] At the 2003 All-Star Game, Jordan was offered a starting spot from Tracy McGrady and Allen Iverson,[85] but refused both; in the end, however, he accepted the spot of Vince Carter, who decided to give it up under great public pressure.[86]

Jordan's final NBA game was on April 16, 2003 in Philadelphia. After scoring only 13 points in the game, Jordan went to the bench with 4 minutes and 13 seconds remaining in the third quarter and with his team trailing the Philadelphia 76ers, 75–56. Just after the start of the fourth quarter, the First Union Center crowd began chanting "We want Mike!". After much encouragement from coach Doug Collins, Jordan finally rose from the bench and re-entered the game for Larry Hughes with 2:35 remaining. At 1:45, Jordan was intentionally fouled by the 76ers' Eric Snow, and stepped to the line to make both free throws. After the second foul shot, the 76ers in-bounded the ball to rookie John Salmons, who in turn was intentionally fouled by Bobby Simmons one second later, stopping time so that Jordan could return to the bench. Jordan received a three-minute standing ovation from his teammates, his opponents, and a crowd of 21,257 fans.[87]
Olympic career
Olympic medal record
Men's basketball
Gold 1984 Los Angeles United States
Gold 1992 Barcelona United States

Jordan played on two Olympic gold medal-winning American basketball teams. As a college player he participated, and won the gold, in the 1984 Summer Olympics. Jordan led the team in scoring averaging 17.1 ppg for the tournament.[88] In the 1992 Summer Olympics he was a member of the star-studded squad that included Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, and David Robinson and was dubbed the "Dream Team". Playing limited minutes due to the frequent blowouts, Jordan averaged 12.7 ppg, finishing fourth on the team in scoring.[89] Jordan, Patrick Ewing, and fellow Dream Team member Chris Mullin are the only American men's basketball players to win Olympic gold as amateurs (all in 1984) and professionals.[88][90]
After retiring as a player
Jordan on the golf course in 2007.

After his third retirement, Jordan assumed that he would be able to return to his front office position of Director of Basketball Operations with the Wizards.[91] However, his previous tenure in the Wizards' front office had produced the aforementioned mixed results and may have also influenced the trade of Richard "Rip" Hamilton for Jerry Stackhouse (although Jordan was not technically Director of Basketball Operations in 2002).[68] On May 7, 2003, Wizards owner Abe Pollin fired Jordan as Washington's President of Basketball Operations.[68] Jordan later stated that he felt betrayed, and that if he knew he would be fired upon retiring he never would have come back to play for the Wizards.[40]

Jordan kept busy over the next few years by staying in shape, playing golf in celebrity charity tournaments, spending time with his family in Chicago, promoting his Jordan Brand clothing line, and riding motorcycles.[92] Since 2004, Jordan has owned Michael Jordan Motorsports, a professional closed-course motorcycle road racing team that competes with two Suzukis in the premier Superbike class sanctioned by the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA).[93][94] Jordan and his then-wife Juanita pledged $5 million to Chicago's Hales Franciscan High School in 2006,[95] and the Jordan Brand has made donations to Habitat for Humanity and a Louisiana branch of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America.[96] On June 15, 2006, Jordan bought a minority stake in the Charlotte Bobcats, becoming the team's second-largest shareholder behind majority owner Robert L. Johnson. As part of the deal, Jordan was named "Managing Member of Basketball Operations," with full control over the basketball side of the operation.[97] Despite Jordan's previous success as an endorser, he has made an effort not to be included in Charlotte's marketing campaigns.[98]

Johnson put the team up for sale in the summer of 2009, and rumors immediately abounded that Jordan would seek to buy the team. In February 2010 it was confirmed that Jordan is seeking majority ownership of the team.[99] As February wore on, it emerged that the leading contenders for the team were Jordan and former Houston Rockets president George Postolos. On February 27, the Bobcats announced that Johnson had reached an agreement with Jordan and his group, MJ Basketball Holdings, to buy the team pending NBA approval.[100] On March 17, the NBA Board of Governors unanimously approved Jordan's purchase, making him the first former NBA player ever to become the majority owner of a league franchise.[101]
Player profile
Michael Jordan, 2006

Jordan was a shooting guard who was also capable of playing small forward (the position he would primarily play during his second comeback with the Washington Wizards). Jordan was known throughout his career for being a strong clutch performer. He decided numerous games with last-second plays (e.g., The Shot) and performed at a high level even under adverse circumstances (e.g., Flu Game). His competitiveness was visible in his prolific trash-talk[102] and well-known work ethic.[103][104]

Jordan had a versatile offensive game. He was capable of aggressively driving to the basket and drawing fouls from his opponents at a high rate; his 8,772 free throw attempts are the ninth highest total of all time.[105] As his career progressed, Jordan also developed the ability to post up his opponents and score with his trademark fadeaway jumpshot, using his leaping ability to "fade away" from block attempts. According to Hubie Brown, this move alone made him nearly unstoppable.[106] Despite media criticism as a "selfish" player early in his career, Jordan's 5.3 assists per game[12] also indicate his willingness to defer to his teammates. In later years, the NBA shortened its three-point line to 22 feet (from 23 feet, 9 inches), which coupled with Jordan's extended shooting range to make him a long-range threat as well—his 3-point stroke developed from a low 9 / 52 rate (.173) in his rookie year into a stellar 111 / 260 (.427) shooter in the 1995–96 season.[12] For a guard, Jordan was also a good rebounder (6.2 per game).[12]

In 1988, he was honored with the NBA's Defensive Player of the Year Award and became the first NBA player to win both the Defensive Player of the Year and MVP awards in a career (since equaled by Hakeem Olajuwon, David Robinson, and Kevin Garnett; Olajuwon is the only player other than Jordan to win both during the same season). In addition he set records for blocked shots by a guard,[107] and combined this with his ball-thieving ability to become a standout defensive player. His 2,514 steals are the second highest total of all-time behind John Stockton, while his steals per game average is third all-time.[108] Jerry West often stated that he was more impressed with Jordan's defensive contributions than his offensive ones.[109]
Legacy

Jordan's basketball talent was clear from his rookie season.[15][17] In his first game in Madison Square Garden against the New York Knicks, Jordan received a prolonged standing ovation,[17] a rarity for an opposing player. After Jordan scored a playoff record 63 points against the Boston Celtics in 1986, Celtics star Larry Bird described him as "God disguised as Michael Jordan."[23]
"By acclamation, Michael Jordan is the greatest basketball player of all time."
—Introductory line of Jordan's NBA Encyclopedia biography[1]

Jordan led the NBA in scoring in 10 seasons (NBA record) and tied Wilt Chamberlain's record of seven consecutive scoring titles. He was also a fixture on the NBA All-Defensive First Team, making the roster nine times (NBA record shared with Gary Payton). Jordan also holds the top career regular season and playoff scoring averages of 30.1 and 33.4 points per game,[1] respectively. By 1998, the season of his Finals-winning shot against the Jazz, he was well known throughout the league as a clutch performer. In the regular season, Jordan was the Bulls' primary threat in the final seconds of a close game and in the playoffs, Jordan would always demand the ball at crunch time.[110] Jordan's total of 5,987 points in the playoffs is the highest in NBA history.[111] He retired with 32,292 points in regular season play,[112] placing him third on the NBA's all-time scoring list behind Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Karl Malone.[112]

With five regular-season MVPs (tied for second place with Bill Russell; only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has won more, six), six Finals MVPs (NBA record), and three All-Star MVPs, Jordan is the most decorated player ever to play in the NBA. Jordan finished among the top three in regular-season MVP voting a record 10 times, and was named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History in 1996.
"There's Michael Jordan and then there is the rest of us."
—Magic Johnson[1]

Many of Jordan's contemporaries label Jordan as the greatest basketball player of all time.[109] An ESPN survey of journalists, athletes and other sports figures ranked Jordan the greatest North American athlete of the 20th century, above icons such as Babe Ruth and Muhammad Ali.[113] Jordan placed second to Babe Ruth in the Associated Press's list of 20th century athletes.[114] In addition, the Associated Press voted him as the basketball player of the 20th century.[115] Jordan has also appeared on the front cover of Sports Illustrated a record 49 times.[116] In the September 1996 issue of Sport, which was the publication's 50th anniversary issue, Jordan was named the greatest athlete of the past 50 years.[117]

Jordan's athletic leaping ability, highlighted in his back-to-back slam dunk contest championships in 1987 and 1988, is credited by many with having influenced a generation of young players.[118][119] Several current NBA All-Stars have stated that they considered Jordan their role model while growing up, including LeBron James[120] and Dwyane Wade.[121] In addition, commentators have dubbed a number of next-generation players "the next Michael Jordan" upon their entry to the NBA, including Anfernee "Penny" Hardaway, Grant Hill, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Vince Carter, and Dwyane Wade.[122][123][124] Although Jordan was a well-rounded player, his "Air Jordan" image is also often credited with inadvertently decreasing the jump shooting skills, defense, and fundamentals of young players,[118] a fact which Jordan himself has lamented.
“ I think it was the exposure of Michael Jordan; the marketing of Michael Jordan. Everything was marketed towards the things that people wanted to see, which was scoring and dunking. That Michael Jordan still played defense and an all-around game, but it was never really publicized.[118] ”

Although Jordan has done much to increase the status of the game, some of his impact on the game's popularity in America appears to be fleeting.[125][126] Television ratings in particular increased only during his time in the league and have subsequently lowered each time he left the game.[125][126]

In August 2009, the Basketball Hall of Fame opened a Michael Jordan exhibit containing items from his college and NBA careers, as well as from the 1992 "Dream Team". The exhibit also has a batting glove to signify Jordan's short career in baseball.[127] He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in September 2009, with former Bulls teammates Scottie Pippen, Dennis Rodman, Charles Oakley, Ron Harper, Steve Kerr, and Toni Kukoc in attendance.[128]
Personal life

Jordan is the fourth of five children. He has two older brothers, Larry Jordan and James R. Jordan, Jr., one older sister, Deloris, and a younger sister, Roslyn. Jordan's brother James retired in 2006 as the Command Sergeant Major of the 35th Signal Brigade of the XVIII Airborne Corps in the U.S. Army.[129]

He married Juanita Vanoy in September 1989, and they have two sons, Jeffrey Michael and Marcus James, and a daughter, Jasmine. Jordan and Vanoy filed for divorce on January 4, 2002, citing irreconcilable differences, but reconciled shortly thereafter. They again filed for divorce and were granted a final decree of dissolution of marriage on December 29, 2006, commenting that the decision was made "mutually and amicably".[130][131] It is reported that Juanita received a $168 million settlement, making it the largest celebrity divorce settlement in history on public record.[132]

On July 21, 2006, a Cook County, Illinois judge determined that Jordan did not owe his alleged former lover Karla Knafel $5 million.[133] Jordan had allegedly paid Knafel $250,000 to keep their relationship a secret.[134][135][136] Knafel claimed Jordan promised her $5 million for remaining silent and agreeing not to file a paternity suit after Knafel learned she was pregnant in 1991. A DNA test showed Jordan was not the father of the child.[133]

As of 2007, Jordan lives in Highland Park, Illinois,[130] and both of his sons attended Loyola Academy, a private Roman Catholic high school located in Wilmette, Illinois.[137] Jeffrey graduated as a member of the 2007 graduating class and played his first collegiate basketball game on November 11, 2007, for the University of Illinois. After two seasons, Jeffrey left the Illinois basketball team in 2009, but later rejoined.[138][139] Marcus transferred to Whitney Young High School after his sophomore year and graduated in 2009. He began attending the University of Central Florida in the fall of 2009.[140]
Media figure and business interests
The "Jumpman" logo is a silhouette of Jordan used by Nike to promote the Air Jordan shoes, among other merchandise.

Jordan is one of the most marketed sports figures in history. He has been a major spokesman for such brands as Nike, Coca-Cola, Chevrolet, Gatorade, McDonald's, Ball Park Franks, Rayovac, Wheaties, Hanes, and MCI.[141] Jordan has had a long relationship with Gatorade, appearing in over 20 commercials for the company since 1991, including the "Like Mike" commercials in which a song was sung by children wishing to be like Jordan.[141][142]

Nike created a signature shoe for him, called the Air Jordan. One of Jordan's more popular commercials for the shoe involved Spike Lee playing the part of Mars Blackmon. In the commercials Lee, as Blackmon, attempted to find the source of Jordan's abilities and became convinced that "it's gotta be the shoes".[141] The hype and demand for the shoes even brought on a spate of "shoe-jackings" where people were robbed of their sneakers at gunpoint. Subsequently Nike spun off the Jordan line into its own division named the "Jordan Brand". The company features an impressive list of athletes and celebrities as endorsers.[143][144] The brand has also sponsored college sports programs such as those of North Carolina, Cincinnati, Cal, St. John's, Georgetown, and North Carolina A&T.

Jordan also has been connected with the Looney Tunes cartoon characters. A Nike commercial shown during the 1993 Super Bowl XXVII featured Jordan and Bugs Bunny playing basketball against a group of Martian characters.[145] The Super Bowl commercial inspired the 1996 live action/animated movie Space Jam, which starred Jordan and Bugs in a fictional story set during his first retirement.[146] They have subsequently appeared together in several commercials for MCI.[146]

Jordan's yearly income from the endorsements is estimated to be over forty million dollars.[147][148] In addition, when Jordan's power at the ticket gates was at its highest point the Bulls regularly sold out every game they played in, whether home or away.[149] Due to this, Jordan set records in player salary by signing annual contracts worth in excess of $30 million US dollars per season.[150]

Most of Jordan's endorsement deals, including the first deal with Nike, were engineered by his agent, David Falk.[151] Jordan has said of Falk that "he's the best at what he does", and that "marketing-wise, he's great. He's the one who came up with the concept of 'Air Jordan.'"[152]

An academic study found that Jordan’s first NBA comeback resulted in an increase in the market capitalization of his client firms of more than $1 billion.[153]
Honors and awards
Main article: List of career achievements by Michael Jordan
Michael Jordan and Dean Smith at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill game honoring the 1957 and 1982 men's basketball teams.

Jordan won numerous awards and set many records during his career. The following are some of his achievements:[1][154][155]

* Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Class of 2009
* 2 Olympic Gold Medals – 1984, 1992
* 6-time NBA Champion
* 6-time NBA Finals MVP
* 5-time NBA MVP
* 7-time The Sporting News MVP
* 10 NBA Scoring Titles
* 3-time steals leader
* 14 NBA All-Star Selections
* 3-time NBA All-Star Game MVP
* 11 All-NBA Selections
* 9 All-Defensive First Team Selections
* 2-time NBA Slam Dunk Contest Champion – 1987, 1988
* NBA Rookie of the Year – 1984
* NBA Defensive Player of the Year – 1988
* ACC Freshman of the Year – 1982
* 2-time Consensus NCAA All-American First Team – 1983, 1984
* ACC Men's Basketball Player of the Year – 1984
* USBWA College Player of the Year – 1984
* Naismith College Player of the Year – 1984
* John R. Wooden Award – 1984
* Adolph Rupp Trophy – 1984
* Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year – 1991
* Named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History in 1996
* Ranked #1 by SLAM Magazine's Top 50 Players of All-Time
* Ranked #1 by ESPN Sportscentury's Top 100 Athletes of the 20th century


--

Edward Arthur Seykota (born August 7, 1946) is a commodities trader, who earned BSc degrees in both Electrical Engineering and Management from MIT, both in 1969. In 1970 he pioneered Systems trading by using early punched card computers to test ideas on trading the markets. Seykota resides in Incline Village-Crystal Bay, Nevada, on the north shore of Lake Tahoe.

Career

As a young man he attended high school near The Hague, Netherlands and also lived in Voorburg.
[edit] Trading methods

Seykota is a trader who in 1970 pioneered a computerized trading system (now known as System trading) for the futures market for the brokerage house he and Michael Marcus were working for. Later, he decided to venture out on his own and manage a few of his client's accounts.

Much of Seykota's success was attributed to his development and utilization of computerized trading systems to which he first tested on a mainframe IBM computer. Later on, the brokerage house he had been working for adopted his system for their trades.

His interest in creating a computerized system was spawned after he read a letter by Richard Donchian on utilizing mechanical trend following systems for trading and also Donchian's 5 and 20 day moving average system. He was also inspired by the book Reminiscences of a Stock Operator. His first trading system was developed based on exponential moving averages.

Ed Seykota, Market Wizards
“ Systems don’t need to be changed. The trick is for a trader to develop a system with which he is compatible. ”

Seykota improved this system over time, adapting the system to fit his trading style and preferences. With the initial version of the system being rigid, he later introduced more rules into the system in addition to pattern triggers and money management algorithms.

Another aspect of his success was his genuine love for trading and his optimistic demeanour. This factor sustained his efforts to continuously improve on his system although he never changed the response indicators of the system and instead fine tuned market stimuli.
[edit] Influence

Some of Ed's students have included Michael Marcus, David Druz, Jason Dekker, and Jason Russell of Salida Capital [1]

Trader, instructor, and blogger Michael Martin is known to be one of Ed's protege's as well. [2]
[edit] Controversial claims concerning physics

Seykota maintains a website in which, while he does not deny the validity of the Bernoulli principle, he considers it to be misapplied, claiming that these misapplications are bad physics. Seykota refers to his theory as the theory of radial momentum. He writes:

The classic theory of airplane lift is all about wing curvature ... and that, according to Bernoulli's Principle, fast-flowing air has lower pressure. In 1997, after pondering this matter for some twenty years, Ed Seykota concludes that lift has nothing at all to do with Bernoulli's Principle ... rather, lift is a function of Radial Momentum ... the radial fanning out of a fluid lowers its density ... and therefore, the pressure decreases with the distance from the center of radiation.

Seykota's theory is controversial and as a consequence he receives a lot of criticism.

--

Abraham Lincoln
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Abraham Lincoln

16th President of the United States
In office
March 4, 1861 – April 15, 1865
Vice President Hannibal Hamlin (1861–1865)
Andrew Johnson (1865)
Preceded by James Buchanan
Succeeded by Andrew Johnson
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Illinois's 7th district
In office
March 4, 1847 – March 3, 1849
Preceded by John Henry
Succeeded by Thomas L. Harris
Born February 12, 1809(1809-02-12)
Hardin County, Kentucky
Died April 15, 1865 (aged 56)
Washington, D.C.
Resting place Oak Ridge Cemetery
Springfield, Illinois
39°49′24″N 89°39′21″W / 39.82333°N 89.65583°W / 39.82333; -89.65583
Nationality American
Political party Whig (1832-1854)
Republican (1854–1865)
National Union (1864)
Spouse(s) Mary Todd Lincoln
Children Robert Todd Lincoln
Edward Lincoln
Willie Lincoln
Tad Lincoln
Occupation Lawyer
Religion See: Abraham Lincoln and religion
Signature
Military service
Service/branch Illinois Militia
Years of service 1832
Battles/wars Black Hawk War

Abraham Lincoln (February 12, 1809 – April 15, 1865) served as the 16th President of the United States from March 1861 until his assassination in April 1865. He successfully led his country through its greatest internal crisis, the American Civil War, preserving the Union and ending slavery. Before his election in 1860 as the first Republican president, Lincoln had been a country lawyer, an Illinois state legislator, a member of the United States House of Representatives, and twice an unsuccessful candidate for election to the U.S. Senate. As an outspoken opponent of the expansion of slavery in the United States,[1][2] Lincoln won the Republican Party nomination in 1860 and was elected president later that year. His tenure in office was occupied primarily with the defeat of the secessionist Confederate States of America in the American Civil War. He introduced measures that resulted in the abolition of slavery, issuing his Emancipation Proclamation in 1863 and promoting the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution. Six days after the large-scale surrender of Confederate forces under General Robert E. Lee, Lincoln became the first American president to be assassinated.

Lincoln had closely supervised the victorious war effort, especially the selection of top generals, including Ulysses S. Grant. Historians have concluded that he handled the factions of the Republican Party well, bringing leaders of each faction into his cabinet and forcing them to cooperate. Lincoln successfully defused the Trent affair, a war scare with Britain late in 1861. Under his leadership, the Union took control of the border slave states at the start of the war. Additionally, he managed his own reelection in the 1864 presidential election.

Copperheads and other opponents of the war criticized Lincoln for refusing to compromise on the slavery issue. Conversely, the Radical Republicans, an abolitionist faction of the Republican Party, criticized him for moving too slowly in abolishing slavery. Even with these opponents, Lincoln successfully rallied public opinion through his rhetoric and speeches; his Gettysburg Address (1863) became an iconic symbol of the nation's duty. At the close of the war, Lincoln held a moderate view of Reconstruction, seeking to speedily reunite the nation through a policy of generous reconciliation. Lincoln has consistently been ranked by scholars as one of the greatest of all U.S. Presidents.

Personal life
Childhood and education
Samuel Lincoln, first American ancestor of Abraham, worshipped at Old Ship Church, Hingham, Massachusetts

Abraham Lincoln was born on February 12, 1809, to Thomas Lincoln and Nancy Hanks, two farmers, in a one-room log cabin on the 348-acre (1.4 km2) Sinking Spring Farm, in southeast Hardin County, Kentucky[3] (now part of LaRue County), making him the first president born in the west. Lincoln was not given a middle name.[4] His ancestor Samuel Lincoln had arrived in Hingham, Massachusetts from England in the 17th century.[5] His grandfather, also named Abraham Lincoln, had moved to Kentucky, where he owned over 5,000 acres (20 km2), and was ambushed and killed by an Indian raid in 1786.[6]

Thomas Lincoln was a respected citizen of rural Kentucky. He owned several farms, including the Sinking Spring Farm, although he was not wealthy. The family belonged to a Separate Baptists church, which had high moral standards, frowning on alcohol consumption and dancing, and many church members were opposed to slavery.[7] Abraham himself never joined their church, or any other church.[8][9]

In 1816, the Lincoln family left Kentucky to avoid the expense of fighting for one of their properties in court, and made a new start in Perry County, Indiana (now in Spencer County). Lincoln later noted that this move was "partly on account of slavery", and partly because of difficulties with land deeds in Kentucky. Abraham's father disapproved of slavery on religious grounds and it was hard to compete economically with farms operated by slaves. Unlike land in the Northwest Territory, Kentucky never had a proper U.S. survey, and farmers often had difficulties proving title to their property.[10]
Symbolic log cabin at the Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park

When Lincoln was nine, his mother, then 34 years old, died of milk sickness. Soon afterwards, his father remarried, to Sarah Bush Johnston. Lincoln and his stepmother were close; he called her "Mother" for the rest of his life, but he became increasingly distant from his father. Abraham felt his father was not a success, and did not want to be like him. In later years, he would occasionally lend his father money.[11] In 1830, fearing a milk sickness outbreak, the family settled on public land in Macon County, Illinois.[12]

The next year, when his father relocated the family to a new homestead in Coles County, Illinois, 22-year-old Lincoln struck out on his own, canoeing down the Sangamon River to the village of New Salem in Sangamon County.[13] Later that year, hired by New Salem businessman Denton Offutt and accompanied by friends, he took goods from New Salem to New Orleans via flatboat on the Sangamon, Illinois and Mississippi rivers.[14]

Lincoln's formal education consisted of about 18 months of schooling; but he was an avid reader and largely self-educated. He was also skilled with an axe and a talented local wrestler, the latter of which helped give him self-confidence.[15] Lincoln avoided hunting and fishing because he did not like killing animals, even for food.[16]
Marriage and family
Further information: Mary Todd Lincoln; Sexuality of Abraham Lincoln; Medical and mental health of Abraham Lincoln
Mary Todd Lincoln, wife of Abraham Lincoln, age 28

Lincoln's first love was Ann Rutledge. He met her when he first moved to New Salem, and by 1835 they had reached a romantic understanding. Rutledge, however, died on August 25, probably of typhoid fever.[17]

Earlier, in either 1833 or 1834, he had met Mary Owens, the sister of his friend Elizabeth Abell, when she was visiting from her home in Kentucky. Late in 1836, Lincoln agreed to a match proposed by Elizabeth between him and her sister, if Mary ever returned to New Salem. Mary did return in November 1836 and Lincoln courted her for a time; however they both had second thoughts about their relationship. On August 16, 1837, Lincoln wrote Mary a letter from Springfield, to which he had moved that April to begin his law practice, suggesting he would not blame her if she ended the relationship. She never replied, and the courtship was over.[18][19]

In 1840, Lincoln became engaged to Mary Todd, from a wealthy slaveholding family based in Lexington, Kentucky.[20] They met in Springfield in December 1839,[21] and were engaged sometime around that Christmas.[22] A wedding was set for January 1, 1841, but the couple split as the wedding approached.[21] They later met at a party, and then married on November 4, 1842, in the Springfield mansion of Mary's married sister.[23] In 1844, the couple bought a house on Eighth and Jackson in Springfield, near Lincoln's law office.[24]

The Lincolns soon had a budding family, with the birth of son Robert Todd Lincoln in Springfield, Illinois on August 1, 1843, and second son Edward Baker Lincoln on March 10, 1846, also in Springfield.[25] According to a house girl, Abraham "was remarkably fond of children".[25] The Lincolns did not believe in strict rules and tight boundaries when it came to their children.[26]
An 1864 Mathew Brady photo depicts President Lincoln reading a book with his youngest son, Tad

Robert, however, would be the only one of the Lincolns' children to survive into adulthood. Edward Lincoln died on February 1, 1850 in Springfield, likely of tuberculosis.[27] The Lincolns' grief over this loss was somewhat assuaged by the birth of William "Willie" Wallace Lincoln nearly eleven months later, on December 21. But Willie himself died of a fever at the age of eleven on February 20, 1862, in Washington, D.C., during President Lincoln's first term.[28] The Lincolns' fourth son Thomas "Tad" Lincoln was born on April 4, 1853, and, although he outlived his father, died at the age of eighteen on July 16, 1871 in Chicago.[29] Robert Lincoln eventually went on to attend Phillips Exeter Academy and Harvard College. His (and by extension, his father's) last known lineal descendant, Robert Todd Lincoln Beckwith, died December 24, 1985.[30]

The death of the Lincolns' sons had profound effects on both Abraham and Mary. Later in life, Mary Todd Lincoln found herself unable to cope with the stresses of losing her husband and sons, and this (in conjunction with what some historians consider to have been pre-existing bipolar disorder[31]) eventually led Robert Lincoln to involuntarily commit her to a mental health asylum in 1875.[32] Abraham Lincoln himself was contemporaneously described as suffering from "melancholy" throughout his legal and political life, a condition which modern mental health professionals would now typically characterize as clinical depression.[33]
Early political career and military service
Main articles: Abraham Lincoln's early life and career and Abraham Lincoln in the Black Hawk War
Sketch of a young Abraham Lincoln

Lincoln began his political career in March 1832 at age 23 when he announced his candidacy for the Illinois General Assembly. He was esteemed by the residents of New Salem, but he didn't have an education, powerful friends, or money. The centerpiece of his platform was the undertaking of navigational improvements on the Sangamon River. Before the election he served as a captain in a company of the Illinois militia during the Black Hawk War, although he never saw combat. Lincoln returned from the militia after a few months and was able to campaign throughout the county before the August 6 election. At 6 feet 4 inches (1.93 m), he was tall and "strong enough to intimidate any rival." At his first political speech, he grabbed a man accosting a supporter by his "neck and the seat of his trousers", and threw him. When the votes were counted, Lincoln finished eighth out of thirteen candidates (only the top four were elected), but he did manage to secure 277 out of the 300 votes cast in the New Salem precinct.[34]
US Postage Stamp, depicting the young Abe Lincoln, 1959 issue. 1c.

In 1834, he won an election to the state legislature. He was labeled a Whig, but ran a bipartisan campaign.[35] He then decided to become a lawyer, and began teaching himself law by reading Commentaries on the Laws of England.[36] Admitted to the bar in 1837, he moved to Springfield, Illinois, that April,[37] and began to practice law with John T. Stuart, Mary Todd's cousin, who let Lincoln have the run of his law library while studying to be a lawyer.[38] With a reputation as a formidable adversary during cross-examinations and closing arguments, Lincoln became an able and successful lawyer. In 1841, Lincoln entered law practice with William Herndon, whom Lincoln thought "a studious young man".[39] He served four successive terms in the Illinois House of Representatives as a representative from Sangamon County, affiliated with the Whig party.[40] In 1837, he and another legislator declared that slavery was "founded on both injustice and bad policy"[41][42] the first time he had publicly opposed slavery. In the 1835–1836 legislative session he'd voted to restrict suffrage to whites only.[43] He would later say[citation needed] that he had been against slavery since he was a boy, but being labelled an abolitionist was "political suicide" in Sangamon County in those years, and so he chose his words carefully when discussing the issue publicly.[44]
National politics
Lincoln in 1846 or 1847

Lincoln was a Whig, and since the early 1830s had strongly admired the policies and leadership of Henry Clay.[45] "I have always been an old-line Henry Clay Whig" he professed to friends in 1861.[46] The party favored economic expansion such as improving roads and increasing trade.[47]

In 1846, Lincoln was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, where he served one two-year term.[48] As a House member, Lincoln was a dedicated Whig, showing up for most votes and giving speeches that echoed the party line.[49] He used his office as an opportunity to speak out against the Mexican–American War, which he attributed to President Polk's desire for "military glory — that attractive rainbow, that rises in showers of blood".[50] Lincoln's main stand against Polk occurred in his Spot Resolutions: The war had begun with a violent confrontation on territory disputed by Mexico and Texas,[51] but as Lincoln pointed out, Polk had insisted that Mexican soldiers had "invaded our territory and shed the blood of our fellow-citizens on our own soil".[52] Lincoln demanded that Polk show Congress the exact spot on which blood had been shed, and prove that the spot was on American soil.[52] Congress never enacted the resolution or even debated it,[53] and its introduction resulted in a loss of political support for Lincoln in his district;[54] one Illinois newspaper derisively nicknamed him "spotty Lincoln."[55]

Despite his admiration for Henry Clay, Lincoln was a key early supporter of Zachary Taylor's candidacy for the 1848 presidential election.[53] When Lincoln's term ended, the incoming Taylor administration offered him the governorship of the Oregon Territory. The territory leaned heavily Democratic, and Lincoln doubted they would elect him as governor or as a senator after they were admitted to the union, so he returned to Springfield.[56]
Prairie lawyer

Back in Springfield, Lincoln turned most of his energies to making a living practicing law, handling "every kind of business that could come before a prairie lawyer."[57] He "rode the circuit"—that is, appeared in county seats in the mid-state region when the county courts were in session.[58][59]

His reputation grew, and he appeared before the Supreme Court of the United States, arguing a case involving a canal boat that sank after hitting a bridge.[60]

Lincoln represented numerous transportation interests, such as the river barges and the railroads. As a riverboat man, Lincoln had initially favored riverboat interests, but ultimately he represented whoever hired him.[61] In 1849, he had received a patent for a "device to buoy vessels over shoals". Lincoln's goal had been to lessen the draft of a river craft by pushing horizontal floats into the water alongside the hull. The floats would have served as temporary ballast tanks.[62][63] The idea was never commercialized, but Lincoln is still the only person to hold a patent and serve as President of the United States.[64] In 1851, he represented the Alton & Sangamon Railroad in a dispute with one of its shareholders, James A. Barret, who had refused to pay the balance on his pledge to the railroad on the grounds that it had changed its originally planned route.[65][66] Lincoln argued that as a matter of law a corporation is not bound by its original charter when that charter can be amended in the public interest, that the newer proposed Alton & Sangamon route was superior and less expensive, and that accordingly the corporation had a right to sue Mr. Barret for his delinquent payment. He won this case, and the decision by the Illinois Supreme Court was eventually cited by 25 other courts throughout the United States.[65] Lincoln appeared in front of the Illinois Supreme Court 175 times, 51 times as sole counsel, of which, 31 were decided in his favor.[67]

Lincoln's most notable criminal trial came in 1858 when he defended William "Duff" Armstrong, who was on trial for the murder of James Preston Metzker.[68] The case is famous for Lincoln's use of judicial notice to show an eyewitness had lied on the stand. After the witness testified to having seen the crime in the moonlight, Lincoln produced a Farmers' Almanac to show that the moon on that date was at such a low angle it could not have produced enough illumination to see anything clearly. Based on this evidence, Armstrong was acquitted.[68]
Republican politics 1854–1860
Lincoln in 1860

Lincoln returned to politics in response to the Kansas-Nebraska Act (1854), which expressly repealed the limits on slavery's extent as established by the Missouri Compromise (1820). Illinois Democrat Stephen A. Douglas, the most powerful man in the Senate, proposed popular sovereignty as the solution to the slavery impasse, and incorporated it into the Kansas–Nebraska Act. Douglas argued that in a democracy the people should have the right to decide whether to allow slavery in their territory, rather than have such a decision imposed on them by the national Congress.[69]

In the October 16, 1854, "Peoria Speech",[70] Lincoln outlined his position on slavery that he would repeat over the next six years on the route to the presidency.[71]

[The Act has a] declared indifference, but as I must think, covert real zeal for the spread of slavery, I cannot but hate it. I hate it because of the monstrous injustice of slavery itself. I hate it because it deprives our republican example of its just influence in the world — enables the enemies of free institutions, with plausibility, to taunt us as hypocrites — causes the real friends of freedom to doubt our sincerity, and especially because it forces so many really good men amongst ourselves into an open war with the very fundamental principles of civil liberty — criticizing the Declaration of Independence, and insisting that there is no right principle of action but self-interest.[72]

According to a newspaper account of the speech, Lincoln spoke with "a thin high-pitched falsetto voice of much carrying power, that could be heard a long distance in spite of the hustle and bustle of the crowd ... [with] the accent and pronunciation peculiar to his native state, Kentucky."[73]

In late 1854, Lincoln decided to run for the United States Senate as a Whig.[74] Despite leading in the first six rounds of voting in the state legislature, Lincoln instructed his backers to vote for Lyman Trumbull to prevent pro-Nebraska candidate Joel Aldrich Matteson from winning. Trumbull beat Matteson in the tenth round of voting.[75] The Whigs had been irreparably split by the Kansas-Nebraska Act. "I think I am a Whig, but others say there are not Whigs, and I am an abolitionist, even though I do no more than oppose the expansion of slavery" he said. Drawing on remnants of the old Whig party, and on disenchanted Free Soil, Liberty, and Democratic party members, he was instrumental in forging the shape of the new Republican Party.[76] At the Republican convention in 1856, Lincoln placed second in the contest to become the party's candidate for Vice-President.[77]

In 1857–58, Douglas broke with President Buchanan, leading to a fight for control of the Democratic Party. Some eastern Republicans even favored the reelection of Douglas in 1858, since he had led the opposition to the Lecompton Constitution, which would have admitted Kansas as a slave state.[78] Accepting the Republican nomination for Senate in 1858, Lincoln delivered his famous speech: "'A house divided against itself cannot stand.'(Mark 3:25) 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. It will become all one thing, or all the other."[79] The speech created an evocative image of the danger of disunion caused by the slavery debate, and rallied Republicans across the north.[80]
US Postage Stamp, 1958 issue, 4c, commemorating the Lincoln and Douglas debates.
Lincoln–Douglas debates of 1858
Main article: Lincoln–Douglas debates of 1858

The 1858 campaign featured the Lincoln–Douglas debates, generally considered the most famous political debate in American history.[81] Lincoln warned that "The Slave Power" was threatening the values of republicanism, while Stephen A. Douglas emphasized the supremacy of democracy, as set forth in his Freeport Doctrine, which said that local settlers should be free to choose whether to allow slavery or not and could overrule the Supreme Courts Dred Scott v. Sandford decision.[82]

Though the Republican legislative candidates won more popular votes, the Democrats won more seats, and the legislature reelected Douglas to the Senate. Nevertheless, Lincoln's definition of the issues gave him a national political reputation.[83]
Preparing for the 1860 elections

In May 1859, Lincoln purchased the Illinois Staats-Anzeiger, a German-language newspaper in Springfield that sang his praises; most of the state's 130,000 German Americans voted Democratic but there was Republican support that a German-language paper could mobilize.[84]

On February 27, 1860, New York party leaders invited Lincoln to give a speech at Cooper Union to group of powerful Republicans. In one of the most important speeches of his career, Lincoln showed that he was a contender for the Republican's presidential nomination. Journalist Noah Brooks reported, "No man ever before made such an impression on his first appeal to a New York audience."[85][86]
1860 Presidential election
Main article: United States presidential election, 1860
"The Rail Candidate" – Lincoln's 1860 candidacy is held up by the slavery issue (slave on left) and party organization (New York Tribune editor Horace Greeley) on right.

On May 9–10, 1860, the Illinois Republican State Convention was held in Decatur.[87] At this convention, Lincoln received his first endorsement to run for the presidency.[88] On May 18, at the 1860 Republican National Convention in Chicago, Lincoln emerged as the Republican candidate on the third ballot, beating candidates such as William H. Seward and Salmon P. Chase.[89]

Why Lincoln won the nomination has been subject of much debate. His expressed views on slavery were seen as more moderate than those of rivals Seward and Chase.[90] Some feel that Seward lost more than Lincoln won, including Seward himself. Others attribute it to luck, and the fact that the convention was held in Lincoln's home state. Historian Doris Kearns Goodwin believes the real reason was Lincoln's skill as a politician.[91] Most Republicans agreed with Lincoln that the North was the aggrieved party[92] as the Slave Power tightened its grasp on the national government with the Dred Scott decision and the presidency of James Buchanan. Throughout the 1850s Lincoln denied that there would ever be a civil war, and his supporters repeatedly rejected claims that his election would incite secession.[93]

Meanwhile, Douglas was selected as the candidate of the northern Democrats, with Herschel Vespasian Johnson as the vice-presidential candidate. Delegates from eleven slave states walked out of the Democratic convention, disagreeing with Douglas's position on Popular sovereignty, and ultimately selected John C. Breckinridge as their candidate.[94]

As Douglas stumped the country, Lincoln was the only one of the four major candidates to give no speeches whatever. Instead he monitored the campaign closely but relied on the enthusiasm of the Republican Party. It did the leg work that produced majorities across the North. It produced tons of campaign posters and leaflets, and thousands of newspaper editorials. There were thousands of Republican speakers who focused first on the party platform, and second on Lincoln's life story, emphasizing his childhood poverty. The goal was to demonstrate the superior power of "free labor", whereby a common farm boy could work his way to the top by his own efforts. The Republican Party's production of campaign literature dwarfed the combined opposition. A Chicago Tribune writer produced a pamphlet that detailed Lincoln's life, and sold one million copies.[95][96] It was during this campaign that Lincoln became the first President to have placed his photo on a campaign button.[97]
1860 presidential election results

On November 6, 1860, Lincoln was elected as the 16th President of the United States, beating Democrat Stephen A. Douglas, John C. Breckinridge of the Southern Democrats, and John Bell of the new Constitutional Union Party. He was the first Republican president, winning entirely on the strength of his support in the North: he was not even on the ballot in ten states in the South, and won only two of 996 counties in all the Southern states.[98] Lincoln received 1,866,452 votes, Douglas 1,376,957 votes, Breckinridge 849,781 votes, and Bell 588,789 votes. The electoral vote was decisive: Lincoln had 180 and his opponents added together had only 123. Turnout was 82.2%, with Lincoln winning the free northern states. Douglas won Missouri, and split New Jersey with Lincoln.[99] Bell won Virginia, Tennessee, and Kentucky, and Breckinridge won the rest of the South.[100] There were fusion tickets in which all of Lincoln's opponents combined to form one ticket in New York, New Jersey and Rhode Island, but even if the anti-Lincoln vote had been combined in every state, Lincoln still would have won because he would still have had a majority in the electoral college.[101]
Presidency and the Civil War
US Postage
Issue of 1896.
Main articles: Origins of the American Civil War and Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War

With the emergence of the Republicans as the nation's first major sectional party by the mid-1850s, the old Second Party System collapsed and a realignment created the Third Party System. It became the stage on which sectional tensions were played out. Although little of the West–the focal point of sectional tensions– was fit for cotton cultivation, Southern secessionists read the political fallout as a sign that their power in national politics was rapidly weakening. The slave system had been buttressed by the Democratic Party, which was increasingly seen by anti-slavery elements as representing a more pro-Southern position that unfairly permitted the Slave Power to prevail in the nation's territories and to dominate national policy before the Civil War. Yet the Democrats suffered a significant reverse in the electoral realignment of the mid-1850s; they lost the dominance they had achieved over the Whig Party and, indeed, were the minority party in most of the northern states. The 1854 election was a Realigning election or "critical election" that saw a realignment of voting patterns.[102] Abraham Lincoln's election was a watershed in the balance of power of competing national and parochial interests and affiliations.[103]
Secession winter 1860–1861
Main articles: Baltimore Plot and Cornerstone Speech

As Lincoln's election became more likely, secessionists made clear their intent to leave the Union.[104] On December 20, 1860, South Carolina took the lead; by February 1, 1861, Florida, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana,[105] and Texas had followed.[106] The seven states soon declared themselves to be a new nation, the Confederate States of America.[105] The upper South (Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Missouri, and Arkansas) listened to, but initially rejected, the secessionist appeal.[107][108] President Buchanan and President-elect Lincoln refused to recognize the Confederacy.[109] Attempts at compromise, such as the Crittenden Compromise which would have extended the Missouri line of 1820, were discussed.[110] Despite support for the Crittenden Compromise among some Republicans, Lincoln denounced it in private letters,[110] saying "either the Missouri line extended, or ... Pop. Sov. would lose us everything we gained in the election; that filibustering for all South of us, and making slave states of it, would follow in spite of us, under either plan",[111] while another Republican Congressman warned it "would amount to a perpetual covenant of war against every people, tribe, and state owning a foot of land between here and Tierra del Fuego."[112]

The Confederate States of America selected Jefferson Davis on February 9, 1861, as their provisional President.[113]
A photograph of the March 4, 1861 inauguration of Abraham Lincoln in front of United States Capitol

President-elect Lincoln evaded possible assassins in Baltimore, and on February 23, 1861, arrived in disguise in Washington, D.C.[114] At his inauguration on March 4, 1861, sharpshooters watched the inaugural platform, while soldiers on horseback patrolled the surrounding area.[115] In his first inaugural address, Lincoln declared, "I hold that in contemplation of universal law and of the Constitution the Union of these States is perpetual. Perpetuity is implied, if not expressed, in the fundamental law of all national governments," arguing further that the purpose of the United States Constitution was "to form a more perfect union" than the Articles of Confederation which were explicitly perpetual, thus the Constitution too was perpetual. He asked rhetorically that even were the Constitution a simple contract, would it not require the agreement of all parties to rescind it?[116]

Also in his inaugural address, in a final attempt to reunite the states and prevent certain war, Lincoln supported the pending Corwin Amendment to the Constitution, which had passed Congress the previous day. This amendment, which explicitly protected slavery in those states in which it already existed, was considered by Lincoln to be a possible way to stave off secession.[117] A few short weeks before the war he went so far as to pen a letter to every governor asking for their support in ratifying the Corwin Amendment.[118]

By the time Lincoln took office, the Confederacy was an established fact,[105] and no leaders of the insurrection proposed rejoining the Union on any terms. The failure of the Peace Conference of 1861 rendered legislative compromise virtually impossible. Buchanan might have allowed the southern states to secede, and some members of his cabinet recommended that. However, conservative Democratic nationalists, such as Jeremiah S. Black, Joseph Holt, and Edwin M. Stanton had taken control of Buchanan's cabinet in early January, and refused to accept secession.[119] Lincoln and nearly every Republican leader adopted this position by March 1861: the Union could not be dismantled. Believing that a peaceful solution was still possible, Lincoln decided to not take any action against the South unless the Unionists themselves were attacked first.[citation needed] This finally happened in April 1861.[120]

Historian Allan Nevins argues that Lincoln made three miscalculations in believing that he could preserve the Union, hold government property, and still avoid war. He "temporarily underrated the gravity of the crisis", overestimated the strength of Unionist sentiment in the South and border states, and misunderstood the conditional support of Unionists in the border states.[121]
Fighting begins
Main article: American Civil War

On April 12, 1861, Union troops at Fort Sumter were fired upon and forced to surrender.[120] On April 15, Lincoln called on the states to send detachments totaling 75,000 troops,[122] to recapture forts, protect the capital, and "preserve the Union", which in his view still existed intact despite the actions of the seceding states.[123] These events forced the states to choose sides. Virginia declared its secession, after which the Confederate capital was moved from Montgomery to Richmond. North Carolina, Tennessee, and Arkansas also voted for secession over the next two months. Missouri, Kentucky and Maryland threatened secession,[122] but neither they nor the slave state of Delaware seceded. Lincoln urgently negotiated with state leaders there, promising not to interfere with slavery.[citation needed] Troops headed south towards Washington, D.C. to protect the capital in response to Lincoln's call. On April 19, angry secessionist mobs in Baltimore, a Maryland city to the north of Washington that controlled the rail links, attacked Union troops traveling to the capital. George William Brown, the Mayor of Baltimore, and other suspect Maryland politicians were arrested and imprisoned at Fort McHenry.[124] Rebel leaders were also arrested in other border areas[citation needed] and held in military prisons without trial. Over 18,000 were arrested. One, Clement Vallandigham, was exiled, but the remainder were released, usually after two or three months (see: Ex parte Merryman).[125]
Conducting the war effort
Main article: Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War
"Running the 'Machine'": An 1864 political cartoon featuring Lincoln; William Fessenden, Edwin Stanton, William Seward, and Gideon Welles take a swing at the Lincoln administration

The war was a source of constant frustration for the president and occupied nearly all of his time. He had a contentious relationship with General McClellan,[126] who became general-in-chief of all the Union armies in the wake of the embarrassing Union defeat at the First Battle of Bull Run and after the retirement of Winfield Scott in late 1861.[127] Despite his inexperience in military affairs, Lincoln immediately took an active part in determining war strategy. His priorities were twofold: to ensure that Washington was well defended; and to conduct an aggressive war effort that would satisfy the demand in the North for prompt, decisive victory.[128] McClellan, a youthful West Point graduate and railroad executive called back to active military service,[129] took a more cautious approach.[68] He took several months to plan and execute his Peninsula Campaign, with the objective of capturing Richmond by moving the Army of the Potomac by boat to the peninsula and then traveling by land to Richmond. McClellan's delay concerned Lincoln, as did his insistence that no troops were needed to defend Washington, Lincoln insisted on holding some of McClellan's troops to defend the capital, a decision McClellan blamed for the ultimate failure of the Peninsula Campaign.[68] McClellan, a conservative Democrat,[130] was passed over for general-in-chief (that is, chief strategist) in favor of Henry Wager Halleck, after giving Lincoln his Harrison's Landing Letter, where he offered unsolicited political advice to Lincoln urging caution in the war effort.[131] McClellan's letter incensed Radical Republicans, who successfully pressured Lincoln to appoint John Pope, a Republican, as head of the new Army of Virginia. Pope complied with Lincoln's strategic desire to move toward Richmond from the north, thus protecting the capital from attack. However, Pope was soundly defeated at the Second Battle of Bull Run in the summer of 1862, forcing the Army of the Potomac to defend Washington for a second time.[132] In response to his failure, Pope was sent to Minnesota to fight the Sioux.[133]

Despite his dissatisfaction with McClellan's failure to reinforce Pope, Lincoln restored him to command of all forces around Washington, to the dismay of his cabinet (all save Seward), who wished McClellan gone.[134] Two days after McClellan's return to command, General Lee's forces crossed the Potomac River into Maryland, leading to the Battle of Antietam (September 1862).[135] The ensuing Union victory, one of the bloodiest in American history, enabled Lincoln to give notice that he would issue an Emancipation Proclamation in January,[136] but he relieved McClellan of his command after waiting for the conclusion of the 1862 midterm elections and appointed Republican Ambrose Burnside to head the Army of the Potomac.[137] Burnside was politically neutral, which Lincoln desired, and for the most part supported the President's aims.[138] Burnside had promised to follow through on Lincoln's strategic vision for a strong offensive against Lee and Richmond. After Burnside was stunningly defeated at Fredericksburg in December,[139] Joseph Hooker took command, despite his history of "loose talk" and criticizing former commanders.[140] Hooker was routed by Lee at the Battle of Chancellorsville in May, 1863,[141] but continued to command his troops for roughly two months. Hooker did not agree with Lincoln's desire to divide his troops, and possibly force Lee to do the same, and tendered his resignation, which was accepted. During the Gettysburg Campaign he was replaced by George Meade.[142]

Using black troops and former slaves was official government policy after the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation. At first Lincoln was reluctant to fully implement this program, but by the spring of 1863 he was ready to initiate "a massive recruitment of Negro troops." In a letter to Andrew Johnson, the military governor of Tennessee, encouraging him to lead the way in raising black troops, Lincoln wrote, "The bare sight of fifty thousand armed, and drilled black soldiers on the banks of the Mississippi would end the rebellion at once."[143] By the end of 1863, at Lincoln's direction, General Lorenzo Thomas had recruited twenty regiments of African Americans from the Mississippi Valley.[144]
Grant
Lincoln, in a top hat, with Allan Pinkerton and Major General John Alexander McClernand at Antietam

After the Union victory at Gettysburg, Meade's failure to pursue Lee and months of inactivity for the Army of the Potomac persuaded Lincoln that a change was needed. McClellan was seeking the Democratic nomination for President, and Lincoln worried that Grant might also have political aspirations. Lincoln convinced himself that Grant didn't have political aspirations, in the immediate at least, and made Ulysses S. Grant commander of the Union Army.[145] Grant already had a solid string of victories in the Western Theater, including the battles of Vicksburg and Chattanooga.[146] Responding to criticism of Grant, Lincoln replied, "I can't spare this man. He fights."[147] Grant waged his bloody Overland Campaign in 1864 with a strategy of a war of attrition, characterized by high Union losses at battles such as the Wilderness and Cold Harbor, but by proportionately higher Confederate losses.[citation needed] The high casualty figures alarmed the nation, and, after Grant lost a third of his army, Lincoln asked what Grant's plans were. "I propose to fight it out on this line if it takes all summer," replied Grant. Lincoln and the Republican party mobilized support throughout the North, backed Grant to the hilt, and replaced his losses.[148] The Confederacy was out of replacements, so Lee's army shrank with every battle, forcing it back to trenches outside Petersburg. In April 1865, Lee's army finally crumbled under Grant's pounding, and Richmond fell.[149]

Lincoln authorized Grant to target the Confederate infrastructure – such as plantations, railroads, and bridges – hoping to destroy the South's morale and weaken its economic ability to continue fighting. This strategy allowed Generals Sherman and Sheridan to destroy plantations and towns in the Shenandoah Valley, Georgia, and South Carolina. The damage caused by Sherman's March to the Sea through Georgia totaled more than $100 million by the general's own estimate.[150]

Lincoln grasped the need to control strategic points (such as the Mississippi River and the fortress city of Vicksburg) and understood the importance of defeating the enemy's army, rather than simply capturing territory. He had, however, limited success in motivating his commanders to adopt his strategies until late 1863, when he found a man who shared his vision of the war in Ulysses S. Grant. Only then could he relentlessly pursue a series of coordinated offensives in multiple theaters, and have a top commander who agreed on the use of black troops.[151] Two days a week, Lincoln would meet with his cabinet in the afternoon, and occasionally his wife would force him to take a carriage ride because she was concerned he was working too hard. Throughout the war, Lincoln showed an intense interest with the military campaigns. He spent hours at the War Department telegraph office, reading dispatches from the field.[152] He visited battle sites frequently, and seemed fascinated by scenes of war.[citation needed] During Jubal Anderson Early's raid on Washington, D.C. in 1864, Lincoln was watching the combat from an exposed position; captain Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. shouted at him, "Get down, you damn fool, before you get shot!"[153]
Emancipation Proclamation
Main articles: Abraham Lincoln on slavery and Emancipation Proclamation
Lincoln met with his cabinet on July 22, 1862 for the first reading of a draft of the Emancipation Proclamation.

Lincoln maintained that the powers of his administration to end slavery were limited by the Constitution. He expected to cause the eventual extinction of slavery by stopping its further expansion into any U.S. territory, and by persuading states to accept compensated emancipation if the state would outlaw slavery (an offer that took effect only in Washington, D.C.). Guelzo says Lincoln believed that shrinking slavery in this way would make it uneconomical, and place it back on the road to eventual extinction that the Founders had envisioned.[154]

In July 1862, Congress passed the Second Confiscation Act, which freed the slaves of anyone convicted of aiding the rebellion. Although Lincoln believed it wasn't in Congress's remit to free any slaves, he approved the bill. He felt freeing the slaves could only be done by the Commander in Chief during wartime, and that signing the bill would help placate those in Congress who wanted to do it through legislation. In that month, Lincoln discussed a draft of the Emancipation Proclamation with his cabinet. In it, he stated that "as a fit and necessary military measure" (and according to Donald not for moral reasons) on January 1, 1863, "all persons held as a slaves" in the Confederate states will " thenceforward, and forever, be free."[155]

In a shrewdly penned August reply to an editorial by Horace Greeley in the influential New York Tribune, with a draft of the Proclamation already on Lincoln's desk, the president subordinated the goal of ending slavery to the cause of preserving the Union, while, at the same time, preparing the public for emancipation being incomplete at first. Lincoln had decided at this point that he could not win the war without freeing the slaves, and so it was a necessity "to do more to help the cause":[citation needed]

I would save the Union. I would save it the shortest way under the Constitution. The sooner the national authority can be restored; the nearer the Union will be "the Union as it was." ... My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that. What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union; and what I forbear, I forbear because I do not believe it would help to save the Union. I shall do less whenever I shall believe what I am doing hurts the cause, and I shall do more whenever I shall believe doing more will help the cause. I shall try to correct errors when shown to be errors; and I shall adopt new views so fast as they shall appear to be true views. I have here stated my purpose according to my view of official duty; and I intend no modification of my oft-expressed personal wish that all men everywhere could be free.[156]

The Emancipation Proclamation, announced on September 22, 1862 and put into effect on January 1, 1863, freed slaves in territories not already under Union control. As Union armies advanced south, more slaves were liberated until all of them in Confederate territory (over three million) were freed. Lincoln later said: "I never, in my life, felt more certain that I was doing right, than I do in signing this paper." The proclamation made the abolition of slavery in the rebel states an official war goal. Lincoln then threw his energies into passage of the Thirteenth Amendment to permanently abolish slavery throughout the nation.[157] He personally lobbied individual Congressmen for the Amendment, which was passed by the Congress in early 1865, shortly before his death.[158] A few days after the Emancipation was announced, thirteen Republican governors met at the War Governors' Conference; they supported the president's Proclamation, but suggested the removal of General George B. McClellan as commander of the Union's Army of the Potomac.[159] For some time, Lincoln continued earlier plans to set up colonies for the newly freed slaves. He commented favorably on colonization in the Emancipation Proclamation, but all attempts at such a massive undertaking failed. As Frederick Douglass observed, Lincoln was, "The first great man that I talked with in the United States freely who in no single instance reminded me of the difference between himself and myself, of the difference of color."[160]
Gettysburg Address
Main article: Gettysburg Address

Although the Battle of Gettysburg was a Union victory, it was also the bloodiest battle of the war and dealt a blow to Lincoln's war effort. As the Union Army decreased in numbers due to casualties, more soldiers were needed to replace the ranks. Lincoln's 1863 military drafts were considered "odious" among many in the north, particularly immigrants. The New York Draft Riots of July 1863 were the most notable manifestation of this discontent. Writing to Lincoln in September 1863, the Governor of Pennsylvania, Andrew Gregg Curtin, warned that political sentiments were turning against Lincoln and the war effort:

If the election were to occur now, the result would be extremely doubtful, and although most of our discreet friends are sanguine of the result, my impression is, the chances would be against us. The draft is very odious in the State ... the Democratic leaders have succeeded in exciting prejudice and passion, and have infused their poison into the minds of the people to a very large extent, and the changes are against us.[161]

Therefore, in the fall of 1863, Lincoln's principal aim was to sustain public support for the war effort. This goal became the focus of his address at the Gettysburg battlefield cemetery on November 19.

The Gettysburg Address is one of the most quoted speeches in United States history.[162][163][164] It was delivered at the dedication of the Soldiers' National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, on the afternoon of Thursday, November 19, 1863, during the American Civil War, four and a half months after the Union armies defeated those of the Confederacy at the decisive Battle of Gettysburg. Abraham Lincoln's carefully crafted address, secondary to other presentations that day, came to be regarded as one of the greatest speeches in American history. In just over two minutes, Lincoln invoked the principles of human equality espoused by the Declaration of Independence and redefined the Civil War as a struggle not merely for the Union, but as "a new birth of freedom" that would bring true equality to all of its citizens, and that would also create a unified nation in which states' rights were no longer dominant. Beginning with the now-iconic phrase, Four score and seven years ago ..., Lincoln referred to the events of the Civil War and described the ceremony at Gettysburg as an opportunity not only to consecrate the grounds of a cemetery, but also to dedicate the living to the struggle to ensure that "government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth".[165]
1864 election
Main article: United States presidential election, 1864
1864 Presidential election results

After Union victories at Gettysburg, Vicksburg, and Chattanooga in 1863, overall victory seemed at hand, and Lincoln promoted Ulysses S. Grant General-in-Chief on March 12, 1864. When the spring campaigns turned into bloody stalemates, Lincoln supported Grant's strategy of wearing down Lee's Confederate army at the cost of heavy Union casualties. With an election looming, he easily defeated efforts to deny his renomination. At the Convention, the Republican Party selected Andrew Johnson, a War Democrat from the Southern state of Tennessee, as his running mate to form a broader coalition. They ran on the new Union Party ticket uniting Republicans and War Democrats.

Nevertheless, Republicans across the country feared that Lincoln would be defeated. Acknowledging this fear, Lincoln wrote and signed a pledge that, if he should lose the election, he would still defeat the Confederacy before turning over the White House:[166]

This morning, as for some days past, it seems exceedingly probable that this Administration will not be re-elected. Then it will be my duty to so co-operate with the President elect, as to save the Union between the election and the inauguration; as he will have secured his election on such ground that he cannot possibly save it afterwards.[167]

Lincoln did not show the pledge to his cabinet, but asked them to sign the sealed envelope. While the Democratic platform followed the Peace wing of the party and called the war a "failure," their candidate, General George B. McClellan, supported the war and repudiated the platform. Lincoln provided Grant with new replacements and mobilized his party to support Grant and win local support for the war effort. Sherman's capture of Atlanta in September ended defeatist jitters; the Democratic Party was deeply split, with some leaders and most soldiers openly for Lincoln; the Union party was united and energized, and Lincoln was easily reelected in a landslide. He won all but three states, including 78% of the Union soldiers' vote.[168][169]
Second Inaugural Address
Main article: Lincoln's second inaugural address
The only known photographs of Lincoln giving a speech were taken as he delivered his second inaugural address. Here, he stands in the center, with papers in his hand.

On March 4, 1865, Lincoln delivered his second inaugural address, his favorite of all his speeches. At this time, a victory over the rebels was at hand, slavery was dead, and Lincoln was looking to the future.

Fondly do we hope — fervently do we pray — that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue, until all the wealth piled by the bond-man's two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash, shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said "the judgments of the Lord, are true and righteous altogether." With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan — to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations.[170]

Reconstruction
Main article: Reconstruction era of the United States

Reconstruction began during the war as Lincoln and his associates pondered questions of how to reintegrate the Southern states and what to do with Confederate leaders and the freed slaves. Lincoln led the "moderates" regarding Reconstruction policy, and was usually opposed by the Radical Republicans, under Thaddeus Stevens in the House and Charles Sumner and Benjamin Wade in the Senate (though he cooperated with these men on most other issues). Determined to find a course that would reunite the nation and not alienate the South, Lincoln urged that speedy elections under generous terms be held throughout the war in areas behind Union lines. His Amnesty Proclamation of December 8, 1863, offered pardons to those who had not held a Confederate civil office, had not mistreated Union prisoners, and would sign an oath of allegiance.[171] Critical decisions had to be made as state after state was reconquered. Of special importance were Tennessee, where Lincoln appointed Andrew Johnson as governor, and Louisiana, where Lincoln attempted a plan that would restore statehood when 10% of the voters agreed to it. The Radicals thought this policy too lenient, and passed their own plan, the Wade-Davis Bill, in 1864. When Lincoln pocket vetoed the bill, the Radicals retaliated by refusing to seat representatives elected from Louisiana, Arkansas, and Tennessee.[172]

Near the end of the war, Lincoln made an extended visit to Grant's headquarters at City Point, Virginia. This allowed the president to confer in person with Grant and Sherman about ending hostilities (as Sherman managed a hasty visit to Grant from his forces in North Carolina at the same time).[173] Lincoln also was able to visit Richmond after it was taken by the Union forces and to make a public gesture of sitting at Jefferson Davis' own desk, symbolically saying to the nation that the President of the United States held authority over the entire land. He was greeted at the city as a conquering hero by freed slaves, whose sentiments were epitomized by one admirer's quote, "I know I am free for I have seen the face of Father Abraham and have felt him." When a general asked Lincoln how the defeated Confederates should be treated, Lincoln replied, "Let 'em up easy."[174][175] Lincoln arrived back in Washington on the evening of April 9, 1865, the day Lee surrendered at Appomattox Court House in Virginia. The war was effectively over. The other rebel armies surrendered soon after, and there was no subsequent guerrilla warfare.[176]
Home front
The last known high-quality photograph of Lincoln, taken March 1865
Redefining Republicanism

Lincoln's rhetoric defined the issues of the war for the nation, the world, and posterity. The Gettysburg Address defied Lincoln's own prediction that "the world will little note, nor long remember what we say here." His second inaugural address is also greatly admired and often quoted. In recent years, historians have stressed Lincoln's use of and redefinition of republican values. As early as the 1850s, a time when most political rhetoric focused on the sanctity of the Constitution, Lincoln shifted emphasis to the Declaration of Independence as the foundation of American political values—what he called the "sheet anchor" of republicanism.[177] The Declaration's emphasis on freedom and equality for all, rather than the Constitution's tolerance of slavers, shifted the debate. As Diggins concludes regarding the highly influential Cooper Union speech, "Lincoln presented Americans a theory of history that offers a profound contribution to the theory and destiny of republicanism itself."[178] His position gained strength because he highlighted the moral basis of republicanism, rather than its legalisms.[179][180] Nevertheless, in 1861 Lincoln justified the war in terms of legalisms (the Constitution was a contract, and for one party to get out of a contract all the other parties had to agree), and then in terms of the national duty to guarantee a "republican form of government" in every state.[181] That duty was also the principle underlying federal intervention in Reconstruction. In his Gettysburg Address Lincoln redefined the American nation, arguing that it was born not in 1789 but in 1776, "conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal." He declared that the sacrifices of battle had rededicated the nation to the propositions of democracy and equality, "that this nation shall have a new birth of freedom — and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth." By emphasizing the centrality of the nation, he rebuffed the claims of state sovereignty. While some critics say Lincoln moved too far and too fast, they agree that he dedicated the nation to values that marked "a new founding of the nation."[182]
Civil liberties suspended

During the Civil War, Lincoln appropriated powers no previous President had wielded: he used his war powers to proclaim a blockade, suspended the writ of habeas corpus, spent money before Congress appropriated it, and imprisoned between 15,000 and 18,000 suspected Confederate sympathizers without trial.[183]
Domestic measures

Lincoln believed in the Whig theory of the presidency, which left Congress to write the laws while he signed them; Lincoln exercised his veto power only four times, the only significant instance being his pocket veto of the Wade-Davis Bill.[184] Thus, he signed the Homestead Act in 1862, making millions of acres of government-held land in the West available for purchase at very low cost. The Morrill Land-Grant Colleges Act, also signed in 1862, provided government grants for state agricultural colleges in each state. The Pacific Railway Acts of 1862 and 1864 granted federal support for the construction of the United States' First Transcontinental Railroad, which was completed in 1869.[185] The passage of the Homestead Act and the Pacific Railway Acts was made possible by the absence of Southern congressmen and senators who had opposed the measures in the 1850s.[186]

Other important legislation involved two measures to raise revenues for the Federal government: tariffs (a policy with long precedent), and a Federal income tax (which was new). In 1861, Lincoln signed the second and third Morrill Tariff (the first had become law under James Buchanan). In 1861, Lincoln signed the Revenue Act of 1861[187] creating the first U.S. income tax. This created a flat tax of 3% on incomes above $800 ($19,307 in current dollars), which was later changed by the Revenue Act of 1862[188] to a progressive rate structure.[189]

Lincoln also presided over the expansion of the federal government's economic influence in several other areas. The creation of the system of national banks by the National Banking Acts of 1863, 1864, and 1865 allowed the creation of a strong national financial system. In 1862, Congress created, with Lincoln's approval, the Department of Agriculture, although that institution would not become a Cabinet-level department until 1889. The Legal Tender Act of 1862 established the United States Note, the first paper currency in United States history since the Continentals that were issued during the Revolution. This was done to increase the money supply to pay for fighting the war.

In 1862, Lincoln sent a senior general, John Pope, to put down the "Sioux Uprising" in Minnesota. Presented with 303 death warrants for convicted Santee Dakota who were accused of killing innocent farmers, Lincoln ordered a personal review of these warrants, eventually approving 39 of these for execution (one was later reprieved).[190]

Abraham Lincoln is largely responsible for the institution of the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States. Prior to Lincoln's presidency, Thanksgiving, while a regional holiday in New England since the 17th century, had only been proclaimed by the federal government sporadically, and on irregular dates. The last such proclamation was during James Madison's presidency fifty years before. In 1863, Lincoln declared the final Thursday in November to be a day of Thanksgiving, and the holiday has been celebrated annually then ever since.[191]
Assassination
Main article: Abraham Lincoln assassination
Further information: Abraham Lincoln's burial and exhumation
The assassination of Abraham Lincoln. From left to right: Henry Rathbone, Clara Harris, Mary Todd Lincoln, Abraham Lincoln and John Wilkes Booth

Originally, John Wilkes Booth, a well-known actor and a Confederate spy from Maryland, had formulated a plan to kidnap Lincoln in exchange for the release of Confederate prisoners. After attending an April 11 speech in which Lincoln promoted voting rights for blacks, an incensed Booth changed his plans and determined to assassinate the president.[192]

Learning that the President and First Lady would be attending Ford's Theatre, he laid his plans, assigning his co-conspirators to assassinate Vice President Andrew Johnson and Secretary of State William H. Seward. Without his main bodyguard Ward Hill Lamon, to whom he related his famous dream regarding his own assassination, Lincoln left to attend the play Our American Cousin on April 14, 1865.
On April 14, 1866, one year to the day after Lincoln's assassination, the US Post Office issued its first postage stamp honoring the fallen President

As a lone bodyguard wandered, and Lincoln sat in his state box (Box 7) in the balcony, Booth crept up behind the President and waited for what he thought would be the funniest line of the play ("You sock-dologizing old man-trap"), hoping the laughter would muffle the noise of the gunshot. When the laughter began, Booth jumped into the box and aimed a single-shot, round-ball .44 caliber (11 mm) Deringer at his head, firing at point-blank range. Major Henry Rathbone momentarily grappled with Booth but was cut by Booth's knife. Booth then leaped to the stage and shouted "Sic semper tyrannis!" (Latin: Thus always to tyrants) and escaped, despite suffering a broken leg in the leap.[193] A twelve-day manhunt ensued, in which Booth was chased by Federal agents (under the direction of Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton).[194] He was eventually cornered in a Virginia barn house and shot, dying of his wounds soon after.[195]
Lincoln's funeral train carried his remains, as well as 300 mourners and the casket of his son, William, 1,654 miles (2,662 km) to Illinois

An army surgeon, Doctor Charles Leale, initially assessed Lincoln's wound as mortal. The President was taken across the street from the theater to the Petersen House, where he lay in a coma for nine hours before dying. Several physicians attended Lincoln, including U.S. Army Surgeon General Joseph K. Barnes of the Army Medical Museum. Using a probe, Barnes located some fragments of Lincoln's skull and the ball lodged 6 inches (15 cm) inside his brain. Lincoln never regained consciousness and was pronounced dead at 7:22:10 a.m. April 15, 1865. He was the first president to be assassinated or to lie in state. Lincoln's body was carried by train in a grand funeral procession through several states on its way back to Illinois.[196] While much of the nation mourned him as the savior of the United States, Copperheads celebrated the death of a man they considered a tyrant. The Lincoln Tomb in Oak Ridge Cemetery in Springfield, is 177 feet (54 m) tall and, by 1874, was surmounted with several bronze statues of Lincoln. To prevent repeated attempts to steal Lincoln's body and hold it for ransom, Robert Todd Lincoln had it exhumed and reinterred in concrete several feet thick in 1901.
Administration, Cabinet and Supreme Court appointments 1861–1865
Official White House portrait of Abraham Lincoln by George Peter Alexander Healy

Lincoln appointed the following Justices to the Supreme Court of the United States:
Judge↓ Seat↓ State↓ Began active
service↓ Ended active
service↓
Noah Haynes Swayne Seat 7 Virginia 18620127January 27, 1862 18810124January 24, 1881
Samuel Freeman Miller Seat 8 Maine 18620721July 21, 1862 18901013October 13, 1890
David Davis Seat 9 Maryland 18621210December 10, 1862 18770304March 4, 1877
Stephen Johnson Field Seat 10 California 18630520May 20, 1863 18971201December 1, 1897
Salmon P. Chase Seat 1 New Hampshire 18641215December 15, 1864 18730507May 7, 1873

The Lincoln Cabinet
OFFICE NAME TERM
President Abraham Lincoln 1861–1865
Vice President Hannibal Hamlin 1861–1865
Andrew Johnson 1865
State William H. Seward 1861–1865
War Simon Cameron 1861–1862
Edwin M. Stanton 1862–1865
Treasury Salmon P. Chase 1861–1864
William P. Fessenden 1864–1865
Hugh McCulloch 1865
Justice Edward Bates 1861–1864
James Speed 1864–1865
Post Montgomery Blair 1861–1864
William Dennison, Jr. 1864–1865
Navy Gideon Welles 1861–1865
Interior Caleb B. Smith 1861–1862
John P. Usher 1863–1865

[197]
States admitted to the Union

* West Virginia – June 20, 1863
* Nevada – October 31, 1864

Religious and philosophical beliefs
Further information: Abraham Lincoln and religion
Lincoln in 1865, portrait by William Morris Hunt

In March 1860 in a speech in New Haven, Connecticut, Lincoln said, regarding slavery, "Whenever this question shall be settled, it must be settled on some philosophical basis. No policy that does not rest upon some philosophical public opinion can be permanently maintained." The philosophical basis for Lincoln's beliefs regarding slavery and other issues of the day require that Lincoln be examined "seriously as a man of ideas." Lincoln was a strong supporter of the American Whig version of liberal capitalism.[198] More than any political leader of the day he fashioned public policy into the mold of religious language, especially a kind of Old School Calvinism that avoided the evangelical, revivalistic fervor of the Second Great Awakening.[199]

There were few people who strongly or directly influenced Lincoln's moral and intellectual development and perspectives. There was no teacher, mentor, church leader, community leader, or peer that Lincoln would credit in later years as a strong influence on his intellectual development. Lacking a formal education, Lincoln's personal philosophy was shaped by "an amazingly retentive memory and a passion for reading and learning." It was Lincoln's reading, rather than his relationships, that were most influential in shaping his personal beliefs.[200][201]

Even as a child, Lincoln largely rejected organized religion, but the Calvinistic "doctrine of necessity" would remain a factor throughout his life. In 1846 Lincoln described the effect of this doctrine as "that the human mind is impelled to action, or held in rest by some power, over which the mind itself has no control."[202] In April 1864, in justifying his actions regarding Emancipation, Lincoln wrote, "I claim not to have controlled events, but confess plainly that events have controlled me. Now, at the end of three years struggle the nation's condition is not what either party, or any man devised, or expected. God alone can claim it."[203]

As Lincoln matured, and especially during his term as president, the idea of a divine will somehow interacting with human affairs increasingly influenced his public expressions. On a personal level, the death of his son Willie in February 1862 may have caused Lincoln to look towards religion for answers and solace.[204] After Willie's death, in the summer or early fall of 1862, Lincoln attempted to put on paper his private musings on why, from a divine standpoint, the severity of the war was necessary:

The will of God prevails. In great contests each party claims to act in accordance with the will of God. Both may be, and one must be, wrong. God cannot be for and against the same thing at the same time. In the present civil war it is quite possible that God's purpose is something different from the purpose of either party—and yet the human instrumentalities, working just as they do, are of the best adaptation to effect his purpose. I am almost ready to say this is probably true—that God wills this contest, and wills that it shall not end yet. By his mere quiet power, on the minds of the now contestants, He could have either saved or destroyed the Union without a human contest. Yet the contest began. And having begun He could give the final victory to either side any day. Yet the contest proceeds.[205]

Lincoln's religious skepticism was fueled by his readings in Enlightenment and classical liberalism, especially economic liberalism.[200] Consistent with the common practice of the Whig party, Lincoln would often use the Declaration of Independence as the philosophical and moral expression of these two philosophies.[206] In a February 22, 1861 speech at Independence Hall in Philadelphia Lincoln said,

I have never had a feeling politically that did not spring from the sentiments embodied in the Declaration of Independence. ... It was not the mere matter of the separation of the Colonies from the motherland; but that sentiment in the Declaration of Independence which gave liberty, not alone to the people of this country, but, I hope, to the world, for all future time. It was that which gave promise that in due time the weight would be lifted from the shoulders of all men. This is a sentiment embodied in the Declaration of Independence.[207]

He found in the Declaration justification for Whig economic policy and opposition to territorial expansion and the nativist platform of the Know Nothings. In claiming that all men were created free, Lincoln and the Whigs argued that this freedom required economic advancement, expanded education, territory to grow, and the ability of the nation to absorb the growing immigrant population.[208]

It was the "Declaration of Independence", rather than the Bible, that Lincoln most relied on to oppose any further territorial expansion of slavery. He saw the Declaration as more than a political document. To him, as well as to many abolitionists and other antislavery leaders, it was, foremost, a moral document that had forever determined valuable principles for the future shaping of the nation.[209]
Legacy and memorials
Further information: Cultural depictions of Abraham Lincoln
The Apotheosis of Abraham Lincoln, greeted by George Washington in heaven (an 1860s work)

Lincoln's death made the President a national martyr,[210] regarded by historians in numerous polls as among the greatest presidents in U.S. history, usually in the top three, along with George Washington and Franklin D. Roosevelt.[211] A study published in 2004, found that scholars in the fields of history and politics ranked Lincoln number one, while law scholars placed him second after Washington.[212] Among contemporary admirers, Lincoln is usually seen as personifying classical values of honesty and integrity, as well as respect for individual and minority rights, and human freedom in general. Many American organizations of all purposes and agendas continue to cite his name and image, with interests ranging from the gay rights-supporting Log Cabin Republicans to the insurance corporation Lincoln National Corporation. The Lincoln automobile brand is also named after him.
US Postage Stamp, 1959 issue, 4c, with image of Lincoln taken from the Lincoln Memorial.

The ballistic missile submarine Abraham Lincoln (SSBN-602) and the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) were named in his honor.[213] During the Spanish Civil War, the American faction of the International Brigades named themselves the Abraham Lincoln Brigade.[214] Lincoln has been memorialized in many town, city, and county names,[215] including the capital of Nebraska.[216] Lincoln, Illinois, is the only city to be named for Abraham Lincoln before he became President.[217]
The statue of Lincoln in Parliament Square, London

Lincoln's name and image appear in numerous places. These include the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.,[216] the U.S. Lincoln $5 bill and the Lincoln cent, and Lincoln's sculpture on Mount Rushmore. Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park in Hodgenville, Kentucky,[218] Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial in Lincoln City, Indiana,[219] and Lincoln Home National Historic Site in Springfield, Illinois,[220] commemorate the president.[221] In addition, New Salem, Illinois (a reconstruction of Lincoln's early adult hometown),[222] Ford's Theatre, and Petersen House (where he died) are all preserved as museums.[223]
Head of Lincoln statue (1974 photograph) on Interstate 80 between Cheyenne and Laramie, Wyoming

The state nickname for Illinois is Land of Lincoln; the slogan has appeared continuously on nearly all Illinois license plates issued since 1954.[224]

Abraham Lincoln's birthday, February 12, was never a national holiday, but it was observed by 30 states.[215] In 1971, Presidents Day became a national holiday, combining Lincoln's and Washington's birthdays, and replacing most states' celebration of his birthday.[225] As of 2005, Lincoln's Birthday is a legal holiday in 10 states.[226] The Abraham Lincoln Association was formed in 1908 to commemorate the centennial of Lincoln's birth.[227] The Association is now the oldest group dedicated to the study of Lincoln.[228]

To commemorate his 200th birthday in February 2009, Congress established the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission (ALBC) in 2000 to honor Lincoln.[229] The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum is located in Springfield and is run by the State of Illinois.[230]

Lincoln owned a model 1857 Waltham William Ellery watch, with serial number 67613. This watch is now in the custody of the Smithsonian Museum.[231] On March 11, 2009, the National Museum of American History found a message engraved inside Lincoln's watch by a watchmaker named Jonathan Dillon who was repairing it at the outbreak of the American Civil War. The engraving reads (in part): "Fort Sumpter was attacked by the rebels" and "thank God we have a government."[232]
Abraham Lincoln is the only President whose portrait appears on U.S.Air Mail Postage

Motorists on Interstate 80 between Cheyenne and Laramie, Wyoming pass a roadside park with the depiction of Lincoln's head on the top of a rock monument. The head was sculpted by Robert Russin, a University of Wyoming art professor and an admirer of Lincoln. When Russin died in 2007, his ashes were interred in the hollow monumeny. The statue originally stood at Sherman Summit, 8,878 feet above sea level, the highest point along the former Lincoln Highway. When I-80 was completed in 1969, the head was moved to the current site. Though it was reduced in height, it attracted a wider viewing audience.[233]

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Sri Mulyani Indrawati (born August 26, 1962) is an Indonesian economist. She has been recently appointed the Managing Director of the World Bank Group and resigned as Finance Minister of Indonesia.

Mulyani received her doctorate in economics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1992. She is an executive director of the International Monetary Fund representing 12 economies in Southeast Asia. In 2001, Mulyani left for Atlanta, United States, to serve as a consultant with the U.S. Aid Agency USAID for programs to strengthen Indonesia’s autonomy. She lectured on the Indonesian economy at Georgia University.[1] She successfully tackled corruption in Indonesia's tax and customs office, and enjoys a reputation for integrity.[2] In August 2008, Mulyani was ranked by Forbes Magazine as the 23rd most powerful woman in the world[3] and the most powerful in Indonesia.

On May 5, 2010 Mulyani was appointed as one of three Managing Directors of the World Bank Group.[4][5]

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Kwik Kian Gie (simplified Chinese: 郭建义; traditional Chinese: 郭建義; pinyin: Guō Jiànyì) (born 11 January 1935 in Juwana, Central Java) was the Indonesian coordinating minister of economics and finance 1999-2000; minister of national development planning 2001-2004.

He is a prominent Chinese Indonesian economist who often wrote columns in the liberal newspaper KOMPAS criticizing the policies of the Suharto administration in the late 1980s and 1990s. Following a teaching post in the Economics department of the University of Indonesia, he was educated in the Nederlandsche Economische Hogeschool in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. After a few years working in the Netherlands following his graduation, he returned to Indonesia and held several executive positions and became an entrepreneur.

However, he maintained a strong interest in politics and education, and said to the press that, "I now have enough money to pay for anything I can wish for," and with that started his involvement with the PDI-P opposition political party of Megawati Sukarnoputri.

He also founded Sekolah Tinggi Ilmu Ekonomi Institut Bisnis Indonesia (STIE IBI), a well-known business/management school in Indonesia, with his colleagues.

During the rise of Megawati Sukarnoputri, he was hailed to be the best candidate for the important post of coordinating minister of economics and finance, to which he was promoted by Abdurrahman Wahid. However, many political hurdles prevented him from making much progress during his posting, and he was later shuffled to become the minister of national development and planning. His tenure was seen as a failure due to the hype that he failed to live up to. He is known as an honest politician and economist, although his writings are sometimes considered controversial.

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Barack Hussein Obama II (Listeni /bəˈrɑːk huːˈseɪn oʊˈbɑːmə/ bə-RAHK hoo-SAYN oh-BAH-mə; born August 4, 1961) is the 44th and current President of the United States. He is the first African American to hold the office. Obama previously served as the junior United States Senator from Illinois, from January 2005 until he resigned after his election to the presidency in November 2008.

Originally from Hawaii, Obama is a graduate of Columbia University and Harvard Law School, where he was the president of the Harvard Law Review. He was a community organizer in Chicago before earning his law degree. He worked as a civil rights attorney in Chicago and taught constitutional law at the University of Chicago Law School from 1992 to 2004.

Obama served three terms in the Illinois Senate from 1997 to 2004. Following an unsuccessful bid for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives in 2000, he ran for United States Senate in 2004. Several events brought him to national attention during the campaign, including his victory in the March 2004 Democratic primary and his prime-time televised keynote address at the Democratic National Convention in July 2004. He won election to the U.S. Senate in November 2004. His presidential campaign began in February 2007, and after a close campaign in the 2008 Democratic Party presidential primaries against Hillary Rodham Clinton, he won his party's nomination. In the 2008 general election, he defeated Republican nominee John McCain and was inaugurated as president on January 20, 2009.

As president, Obama signed economic stimulus legislation in the form of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in February 2009. On October 8, 2009, Obama was named the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize laureate. In March 2010, Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act into law, the first comprehensive health care reform legislation in decades.

Early life and career
Main article: Early life and career of Barack Obama

Barack Obama was born on August 4, 1961[4] at Kapi'olani Maternity & Gynecological Hospital in Honolulu, Hawaii, United States,[5] to Stanley Ann Dunham,[6] an American of predominantly English descent from Wichita, Kansas,[7] and Barack Obama, Sr., a Luo from Nyang’oma Kogelo, Nyanza Province, Kenya Colony. Obama is the first President to have been born in Hawaii.[8][9] Obama's parents met in 1960 in a Russian language class at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa, where his father was a foreign student on scholarship.[10][11] The couple married on February 2, 1961,[12] but separated when Barack Sr. went to Harvard University on scholarship, and divorced in 1964.[11] Obama Sr. remarried and returned to Kenya, visiting Barack in Hawaii only once, in 1971. He died in an automobile accident in 1982.[13]

After her divorce, Dunham married Indonesian student Lolo Soetoro, who was attending college in Hawaii. When Suharto, a military leader in Soetoro's home country, came to power in 1967, all Indonesian students studying abroad were recalled, and the family moved to the Menteng neighborhood of Jakarta.[14][15] From ages six to ten, Obama attended local schools in Jakarta, including Besuki Public School and St. Francis of Assisi School.[16][17] During this time period, Obama was known as "Barry Soetoro" which was his childhood nickname and his stepfather's surname. He continued to use "Barry" into college.[18]

In 1971, Obama returned to Honolulu to live with his maternal grandparents, Madelyn and Stanley Armour Dunham, and attended Punahou School, a private college preparatory school, from the fifth grade until his graduation from high school in 1979.[19] Obama's mother returned to Hawaii in 1972, remaining there until 1977 when she went back to Indonesia to work as an anthropological field worker. She finally returned to Hawaii in 1994 and lived there for one year, before dying of ovarian cancer.[20]
A young boy possibly in his early teens, a younger girl (about age 5), a grown woman and an elderly man, sit on a lawn wearing contemporary circa-1970 attire. The adults wear sunglasses and the boy wears sandals.
Barack Obama and half-sister Maya Soetoro, with their mother Ann Dunham and grandfather Stanley Dunham, in Hawaii (early 1970s)

Of his early childhood, Obama recalled, "That my father looked nothing like the people around me—that he was black as pitch, my mother white as milk—barely registered in my mind."[21] He described his struggles as a young adult to reconcile social perceptions of his multiracial heritage.[22] Reflecting later on his formative years in Honolulu, Obama wrote: "The opportunity that Hawaii offered—to experience a variety of cultures in a climate of mutual respect—became an integral part of my world view, and a basis for the values that I hold most dear."[23] Obama has also written and talked about using alcohol, marijuana and cocaine during his teenage years to "push questions of who I was out of my mind."[24] At the 2008 Civil Forum on the Presidency, Obama identified his high-school drug use as his "greatest moral failure."[25]

Following high school, Obama moved to Los Angeles in 1979 to attend Occidental College.[26] In 1981 Obama went to Indonesia to visit with his mother and sister Maya. Then Obama traveled to Pakistan with a college friend born there. The Obama campaign says Obama was in Pakistan for about three weeks, staying with his friend's family in Karachi and also visiting Hyderabad in Southern India. The Pakistan visit was later used to complete his international studies requirements.[18][27]

Later in 1981 he transferred to Columbia University in New York City, where he majored in political science with a specialty in international relations[28] and graduated with a B.A. in 1983. He worked for a year at the Business International Corporation,[29][30] then at the New York Public Interest Research Group.[31][32]
Chicago community organizer and Harvard Law School

After four years in New York City, Obama was hired in Chicago as director of the Developing Communities Project (DCP), a church-based community organization originally comprising eight Catholic parishes in Greater Roseland (Roseland, West Pullman and Riverdale) on Chicago's far South Side. He worked there as a community organizer from June 1985 to May 1988.[31][33] During his three years as the DCP's director, its staff grew from one to thirteen and its annual budget grew from $70,000 to $400,000. He helped set up a job training program, a college preparatory tutoring program, and a tenants' rights organization in Altgeld Gardens.[34] Obama also worked as a consultant and instructor for the Gamaliel Foundation, a community organizing institute.[35] In mid-1988, he traveled for the first time in Europe for three weeks and then for five weeks in Kenya, where he met many of his paternal relatives for the first time.[36] He returned in August 2006 in a visit to his father's birthplace, a village near Kisumu in rural western Kenya.[37]

In late 1988, Obama entered Harvard Law School. He was selected as an editor of the Harvard Law Review at the end of his first year,[38] and president of the journal in his second year.[39] During his summers, he returned to Chicago, where he worked as a summer associate at the law firms of Sidley Austin in 1989 and Hopkins & Sutter in 1990.[40] After graduating with a Juris Doctor (J.D.) magna cum laude[41] from Harvard in 1991, he returned to Chicago.[38] Obama's election as the first black president of the Harvard Law Review gained national media attention[39] and led to a publishing contract and advance for a book about race relations,[42] which evolved into a personal memoir. The manuscript was published in mid-1995 as Dreams from My Father.[42]
University of Chicago Law School and civil rights attorney

In 1991, Obama accepted a two-year position as Visiting Law and Government Fellow at the University of Chicago Law School to work on his first book.[43] He then served as a professor at the University of Chicago Law School for twelve years—as a Lecturer from 1992 to 1996, and as a Senior Lecturer from 1996 to 2004—teaching constitutional law.[44]

From April to October 1992, Obama directed Illinois's Project Vote, a voter registration drive with ten staffers and seven hundred volunteer registrars; it achieved its goal of registering 150,000 of 400,000 unregistered African Americans in the state, and led to Crain's Chicago Business naming Obama to its 1993 list of "40 under Forty" powers to be.[45] In 1993 he joined Davis, Miner, Barnhill & Galland, a 13-attorney law firm specializing in civil rights litigation and neighborhood economic development, where he was an associate for three years from 1993 to 1996, then of counsel from 1996 to 2004, with his law license becoming inactive in 2002.[46]

From 1994 to 2002, Obama served on the boards of directors of the Woods Fund of Chicago, which in 1985 had been the first foundation to fund the Developing Communities Project, and of the Joyce Foundation.[31] He served on the board of directors of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge from 1995 to 2002, as founding president and chairman of the board of directors from 1995 to 1999.[31]
Political career: 1996–2008
State Senator: 1997–2004
Main article: Illinois Senate career of Barack Obama

Obama was elected to the Illinois Senate in 1996, succeeding State Senator Alice Palmer as Senator from Illinois's 13th District, which at that time spanned Chicago South Side neighborhoods from Hyde Park – Kenwood south to South Shore and west to Chicago Lawn.[47] Once elected, Obama gained bipartisan support for legislation reforming ethics and health care laws.[48] He sponsored a law increasing tax credits for low-income workers, negotiated welfare reform, and promoted increased subsidies for childcare.[49] In 2001, as co-chairman of the bipartisan Joint Committee on Administrative Rules, Obama supported Republican Governor Ryan's payday loan regulations and predatory mortgage lending regulations aimed at averting home foreclosures.[50]

Obama was reelected to the Illinois Senate in 1998, defeating Republican Yesse Yehudah in the general election, and was reelected again in 2002.[51] In 2000, he lost a Democratic primary run for the U.S. House of Representatives to four-term incumbent Bobby Rush by a margin of two to one.[52]

In January 2003, Obama became chairman of the Illinois Senate's Health and Human Services Committee when Democrats, after a decade in the minority, regained a majority.[53] He sponsored and led unanimous, bipartisan passage of legislation to monitor racial profiling by requiring police to record the race of drivers they detained, and legislation making Illinois the first state to mandate videotaping of homicide interrogations.[49][54] During his 2004 general election campaign for U.S. Senate, police representatives credited Obama for his active engagement with police organizations in enacting death penalty reforms.[55] Obama resigned from the Illinois Senate in November 2004 following his election to the U.S. Senate.[56]
2004 U.S. Senate campaign
See also: United States Senate election in Illinois, 2004

In May 2002, Obama commissioned a poll to assess his prospects in a 2004 U.S. Senate race; he created a campaign committee, began raising funds and lined up political media consultant David Axelrod by August 2002, and formally announced his candidacy in January 2003.[57] Decisions by Republican incumbent Peter Fitzgerald and his Democratic predecessor Carol Moseley Braun not to contest the race launched wide-open Democratic and Republican primary contests involving fifteen candidates.[58] In the March 2004 primary election, Obama won in an unexpected landslide—which overnight made him a rising star within the national Democratic Party, started speculation about a presidential future, and led to the reissue of his memoir, Dreams from My Father.[59]

In July 2004, Obama delivered the keynote address at the 2004 Democratic National Convention in Boston, Massachusetts,[60] and it was seen by 9.1 million viewers. His speech was well received and elevated his status within the Democratic Party.[61]

Obama's expected opponent in the general election, Republican primary winner Jack Ryan, withdrew from the race in June 2004.[62] Six weeks later, Alan Keyes accepted the Illinois Republican Party's nomination to replace Ryan.[63] In the November 2004 general election, Obama won with 70% of the vote.[64]
U.S. Senator: 2005–2008
Main article: United States Senate career of Barack Obama

Obama was sworn in as a senator on January 4, 2005,[65] at which time he became the only Senate member of the Congressional Black Caucus.[66] CQ Weekly characterized him as a "loyal Democrat" based on analysis of all Senate votes in 2005–2007. The National Journal ranked him among the "most liberal" senators during 2005 through 2007.[67] He enjoyed high popularity as senator with a 72% approval in Illinois.[68] Obama announced on November 13, 2008 that he would resign his Senate seat on November 16, 2008, before the start of the lame-duck session, to focus on his transition period for the presidency.[69]
Legislation
See also: List of bills sponsored by Barack Obama in the United States Senate
A man with glasses and Obama sit and hold a sheet of paper. Obama points at the paper and talks. Both men wear dark suits and ties.
Senate bill sponsors Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Obama discussing the Coburn–Obama Transparency Act[70]

Obama cosponsored the Secure America and Orderly Immigration Act.[71] He introduced two initiatives bearing his name: Lugar–Obama, which expanded the Nunn–Lugar cooperative threat reduction concept to conventional weapons,[72] and the Coburn–Obama Transparency Act, which authorized the establishment of USAspending.gov, a web search engine on federal spending.[73] On June 3, 2008, Senator Obama, along with Senators Thomas R. Carper, Tom Coburn, and John McCain, introduced follow-up legislation: Strengthening Transparency and Accountability in Federal Spending Act of 2008.[74]

Obama sponsored legislation that would have required nuclear plant owners to notify state and local authorities of radioactive leaks, but the bill failed to pass in the full Senate after being heavily modified in committee.[75] On the issue of tort reform, Obama voted for the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005 and the FISA Amendments Act of 2008, which grants immunity from civil liability to telecommunications companies complicit with NSA warrantless wiretapping operations.[76]
Gray-haired man and Obama stand, wearing casual polo shirts. Obama wears sunglasses and holds something slung over his right sholder.
Obama and U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN) visit a Russian mobile launch missile dismantling facility in August 2005.[77]

In December 2006, President Bush signed into law the Democratic Republic of the Congo Relief, Security, and Democracy Promotion Act, marking the first federal legislation to be enacted with Obama as its primary sponsor.[78] In January 2007, Obama and Senator Feingold introduced a corporate jet provision to the Honest Leadership and Open Government Act, which was signed into law in September 2007.[79] Obama also introduced Deceptive Practices and Voter Intimidation Prevention Act, a bill to criminalize deceptive practices in federal elections[80] and the Iraq War De-Escalation Act of 2007,[81] neither of which has been signed into law.

Later in 2007, Obama sponsored an amendment to the Defense Authorization Act adding safeguards for personality disorder military discharges.[82] This amendment passed the full Senate in the spring of 2008.[83] He sponsored the Iran Sanctions Enabling Act supporting divestment of state pension funds from Iran's oil and gas industry, which has not passed committee, and co-sponsored legislation to reduce risks of nuclear terrorism.[84] Obama also sponsored a Senate amendment to the State Children's Health Insurance Program providing one year of job protection for family members caring for soldiers with combat-related injuries.[85]
Committees

Obama held assignments on the Senate Committees for Foreign Relations, Environment and Public Works and Veterans' Affairs through December 2006.[86] In January 2007, he left the Environment and Public Works committee and took additional assignments with Health, Education, Labor and Pensions and Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs.[87] He also became Chairman of the Senate's subcommittee on European Affairs.[88] As a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Obama made official trips to Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Central Asia and Africa. He met with Mahmoud Abbas before Abbas became President of the Palestinian Authority, and gave a speech at the University of Nairobi condemning corruption in the Kenyan government.[89]
2008 presidential campaign
Main articles: United States presidential election, 2008, Barack Obama presidential primary campaign, 2008, and Barack Obama presidential campaign, 2008
Obama stands on stage with his family. They wave.
Obama stands on stage with his wife and two daughters just before announcing his presidential candidacy in Springfield, Illinois, Feb. 10, 2007.

On February 10, 2007, Obama announced his candidacy for president of the United States in front of the Old State Capitol building in Springfield, Illinois.[90][91][92] The choice of the announcement site was viewed as symbolic[90][93] because it was also where Abraham Lincoln delivered his historic "House Divided" speech in 1858.[92] Throughout the campaign, Obama emphasized the issues of rapidly ending the Iraq War, increasing energy independence and providing universal health care.[94]
Obama delivers a speech at a podium while several flashbulbs light the background.
Obama delivers his presidential election victory speech in Grant Park.

A large number of candidates entered the Democratic Party presidential primaries. The field narrowed to a duel between Obama and Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton after early contests, with the race remaining close throughout the primary process but with Obama gaining a steady lead in pledged delegates due to better long-range planning, superior fundraising, dominant organizing in caucus states, and better exploitation of delegate allocation rules.[95] On June 3, with all states counted, Obama was named the presumptive nominee[96] and delivered a victory speech in St. Paul, Minnesota. Clinton ended her campaign and endorsed him on June 7, 2008.[97]

Obama proceeded to focus on the general election campaign against Senator John McCain, the presumptive Republican nominee, in the lead up to the Democratic National Convention. He announced on August 23, 2008, that he had selected Delaware Senator Joe Biden as his vice presidential running mate.[98] At the convention, held August 25 to August 28 in Denver, Colorado, Hillary Clinton called for her delegates and supporters to endorse Obama, and she and Bill Clinton gave convention speeches in support of Obama.[99] Obama delivered his acceptance speech to over 75,000 supporters and presented his policy goals; the speech was viewed by over 38 million people worldwide.[100]
Obama meets with Bush in the Oval Office. Both sit at a distance in front of the presidential desk with their legs crossed and their backs on an angle toward the camera. They sit at right angles to each other.
President George W. Bush meets with President-Elect Obama in the Oval Office on November 10, 2008.

During both the primary process and the general election, Obama's campaign set numerous fundraising records, particularly in the quantity of small donations.[101] On June 19, 2008, Obama became the first major-party presidential candidate to turn down public financing in the general election since the system was created in 1976.[102]

After McCain was nominated as the Republican candidate, three presidential debates were held between the contenders spanning September and October 2008.[103] On November 4, Obama won the presidency by winning 365 electoral votes to 173 that McCain received,[104] in the process capturing 52.9% of the popular vote to McCain's 45.7%,[105] to become the first African American[106] to be elected president. Obama delivered his victory speech before hundreds of thousands of supporters in Chicago's Grant Park.[107]
Presidency
Main article: Presidency of Barack Obama
See also: Confirmations of Barack Obama's Cabinet and List of presidential trips made by Barack Obama
Barack Obama takes the oath of office as president of the United States.
First days

The inauguration of Barack Obama as the 44th President, and Joe Biden as Vice President, took place on January 20, 2009. In his first few days in office Obama issued executive orders and presidential memoranda directing the U.S. military to develop plans to withdraw troops from Iraq,[108] and ordered the closing of the Guantanamo Bay detention camp "as soon as practicable and no later than" January 2010.[109] Obama also reduced the secrecy given to presidential records[110] and changed procedures to promote disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act.[111] The president also reversed George W. Bush's ban on federal funding to foreign establishments that allow abortions.[112]
Domestic policy

The first bill signed into law by Obama was the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009, relaxing the statute of limitations for equal-pay lawsuits.[113] Five days later, he signed the reauthorization of the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) to cover an additional 4 million children currently uninsured.[114]

In March 2009, Obama reversed a Bush-era policy which had limited funding of embryonic stem cell research to only a small number of lines. Obama stated that he believed "sound science and moral values...are not inconsistent" and pledged to develop "strict guidelines" on the research.[115]

Sonia Sotomayor, nominated by Obama on May 26, 2009, to replace retiring Associate Justice David Souter, was confirmed on August 6, 2009,[116] becoming the first Hispanic to be a Supreme Court Justice.[117]

On September 30, 2009, the Obama administration proposed new regulations on power plants, factories and oil refineries in an attempt to limit greenhouse gas emissions and to curb global warming.[118][119]

Obama signed the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, a measure that expands the 1969 United States federal hate-crime law to include crimes motivated by a victim's actual or perceived gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability, on October 8, 2009.[120][121][122]

On March 30, 2010, Obama signed the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act, a reconciliation bill which ends the process of the federal government giving subsidies to private banks to give out federally insured loans, increases the Pell Grant scholarship award, and makes changes to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.[123][124][125][126]
Economic management

On February 17, 2009, Obama signed into law the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, a $787 billion economic stimulus package aimed at helping the economy recover from the deepening worldwide recession.[127] The act includes increased federal spending for health care, infrastructure, education, various tax breaks and incentives, and direct assistance to individuals,[128] which is being distributed over the course of several years.
President Barack Obama signs the ARRA into law on February 17, 2009 in Denver, Colorado. Vice President Joe Biden stands behind him.

In March, Obama's Treasury Secretary, Timothy Geithner, took further steps to manage the financial crisis, including introducing the Public-Private Investment Program for Legacy Assets, which contains provisions for buying up to $2 trillion in depreciated real estate assets. On March 23, The New York Times noted that "[i]nvestors reacted ecstatically, with all of the major stock indexes soaring as soon as the markets opened."[129]

Obama intervened in the troubled automotive industry[130] in March, renewing loans for General Motors and Chrysler to continue operations while reorganizing. Over the following months the White House set terms for both firms' bankruptcies, including the sale of Chrysler to Italian automaker Fiat[131] and a reorganization of GM giving the U.S. government a temporary 60% equity stake in the company, with the Canadian government shouldering a 12% stake.[132] In June 2009, unsatisfied with the pace of economic stimulus, Obama called on his cabinet to accelerate the investment.[133] He signed into law the successful Car Allowance Rebate System, known colloquially as "Cash for Clunkers", running from July to August 2009, which not only reduced inventories but set off increased production runs at GM, Ford and Toyota, resulting in the rehiring of laid-off workers.[134][135]

In mid-November 2009, Obama acknowledged the concern that adding too much more debt could cause the economy to slide into a "double dip" recession.[136] Although total spending and loan guarantees from the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department authorized by the Bush and Obama administrations is about $11.5 trillion, only $3 trillion had actually been spent by the end of November 2009.[137]

Unemployment numbers rose briefly to as high as 10.1% in October 2009 (the highest since 1983),[138] and the "underemployment" rate to 17.5%,[139] before decreasing and holding at 9.7% in early 2010.[140] In the third quarter of 2009, the U.S. economy expanded at a 2.8% pace[141] and in the fourth quarter it grew at its fastest rate in six years, 5.7%.[142] Other possible signs of recovery included an upturn in exports and a rise in consumer spending.[143]

The Congressional Budget Office and a broad range of economists credit Obama's stimulus plan for the economic growth.[144][145] The CBO released a report stating that the stimulus bill increased employment by 1–2.1 million,[146][147][148][149] while conceding that "It is impossible to determine how many of the reported jobs would have existed in the absence of the stimulus package."[150] Although an April 2010 survey of members of the National Association for Business Economics showed an increase in job creation (over a similar January survey) for the first time in two years, 73% of the 68 respondents believed that the stimulus bill has had no impact on employment.[151]
Foreign policy
President Barack Obama meets The Rt. Hon Gordon Brown in 2009.
Main article: Foreign policy of the Barack Obama administration

In February and March, Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton made separate overseas trips to announce a "new era" in U.S. foreign relations with Russia and Europe, using the terms "break" and "reset" to signal major changes from the policies of the preceding administration.[152] Obama's granting of his first television interview as president to an Arabic cable network, Al Arabiya, was seen as an attempt to reach out to Arab leaders.[153]

On March 19, Obama continued his outreach to the Muslim world, releasing a New Year's video message to the people and government of Iran.[154] This attempt at outreach was rebuffed by the Iranian leadership.[155] In April, Obama gave a speech in Ankara, Turkey, which was well received by many Arab governments.[156] On June 4, 2009, Obama delivered a speech at Cairo University in Egypt calling for "a new beginning" in relations between the Islamic world and the United States and promoting Middle East peace.[157]

On June 26, 2009, in response to the Iranian government's actions towards protesters following Iran's 2009 presidential election, Obama said: "The violence perpetrated against them is outrageous. We see it and we condemn it."[158] On July 7, while in Moscow, he responded to a Vice President Biden comment on a possible Israeli military strike on Iran by saying: "We have said directly to the Israelis that it is important to try and resolve this in an international setting in a way that does not create major conflict in the Middle East."[159]

On September 24, 2009, Obama became the first sitting U.S. president to preside over a meeting of the United Nations Security Council.[160]

In March 2010, Obama took a public stance against plans by the government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to continue building Jewish housing projects in predominantly Arab neighborhoods of East Jerusalem.[161][162] During the same month, an agreement was reached with the administration of Russian President Dmitri Medvedev to replace the 1991 Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty with a new pact reducing the number of long-range nuclear weapons in the arsenals of both countries by about one-third.[163]
Iraq war
Main article: Iraq War

During his presidential transition, President-elect Obama announced that he would retain the incumbent Defense Secretary, Robert Gates, in his Cabinet.[164]

On February 27, 2009, Obama declared that combat operations would end in Iraq within 18 months. His remarks were made to a group of Marines preparing for deployment to Afghanistan. Obama said, "Let me say this as plainly as I can: By August 31, 2010, our combat mission in Iraq will end."[165] The drawdown is scheduled to be completed by August 2010, decreasing troops levels from 142,000 while leaving a transitional force of 35,000 to 50,000 in Iraq until the end of 2011. The plan is to transition the mission of the remaining troops from combat operations to counter-terrorism and the training, equipping, and advising of Iraqi security forces.[166]
War in Afghanistan
Main article: War in Afghanistan (2001–present)

Early in his presidency, Obama moved to bolster U.S. troop strength in Afghanistan.[167] He announced an increase to U.S. troop levels of 17,000 in February 2009 to "stabilize a deteriorating situation in Afghanistan", an area he said had not received the "strategic attention, direction and resources it urgently requires".[168] He replaced the military commander in Afghanistan, General David D. McKiernan, with former Special Forces commander Lt. Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal in May 2009, indicating that McChrystal's Special Forces experience would facilitate the use of counterinsurgency tactics in the war.[169] On December 1, 2009, Obama announced the deployment of an additional 30,000 military personnel to Afghanistan.[170] He also proposed to begin troop withdrawals 18 months from that date.[171][172]
Health care reform
Main article: Health care reform in the United States
Obama signs bill at desk while others look on.
Barack Obama signs the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act at the White House, March 23, 2010.

Obama called for Congress to pass legislation reforming health care in the United States, a key campaign promise and a top legislative goal.[173] He proposed an expansion of health insurance coverage to cover the uninsured, to cap premium increases, and to allow people to retain their coverage when they leave or change jobs. His proposal was to spend $900 billion over 10 years and include a government insurance plan, also known as the public option, to compete with the corporate insurance sector as a main component to lowering costs and improving quality of health care. It would also make it illegal for insurers to drop sick people or deny them coverage for pre-existing conditions, and require every American carry health coverage. The plan also includes medical spending cuts and taxes on insurance companies that offer expensive plans.[174][175]

On July 14, 2009, House Democratic leaders introduced a 1,017-page plan for overhauling the U.S. health care system, which Obama wanted Congress to approve by the end of 2009.[173] After much public debate during the Congressional summer recess of 2009, Obama delivered a speech to a joint session of Congress on September 9 where he addressed concerns over his administration's proposals.[176]

On November 7, 2009, a health care bill featuring the public option was passed in the House.[177][178] On December 24, 2009, the Senate passed its own bill—without a public option—on a party-line vote of 60–39.[179] On March 21, 2010, the health care bill passed by the Senate in December was passed in the House by a vote of 219 to 212.[180] Obama signed the bill into law on March 23, 2010.[181]
Political positions
Main article: Political positions of Barack Obama

During his Senate service, Obama had a lifetime average conservative rating of 7.67% from the American Conservative Union[182] and a lifetime average liberal rating of 90% from the Americans for Democratic Action.[183]

In April 2005, Obama defended the New Deal social welfare policies of Franklin D. Roosevelt and opposed Republican proposals to establish private accounts for Social Security.[184] In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Obama spoke out against government indifference to growing economic class divisions, calling on both political parties to take action to restore the social safety net for the poor.[185] Obama said in 2007 that he supported universal health care in the United States.[186] He has proposed rewarding teachers for performance from traditional merit pay systems, assuring unions that changes would be pursued through the collective bargaining process.[187]

Obama has supported eliminating taxes for senior citizens with incomes of under $50,000, and raising taxes on income over $250,000, on capital gains, and on dividends.[188] He has also supported simplifying tax filings and removing loopholes.[189]

As an environmental initiative, Obama proposed a cap and trade auction system with no grandfathering to restrict carbon emissions and a ten year program of investments in new energy sources to reduce U.S. dependence on imported oil.[190][191]

In foreign affairs, Obama was an early opponent of the George W. Bush administration's policies on Iraq.[192] On October 2, 2002, the day President Bush and Congress agreed on the joint resolution authorizing the Iraq War,[193] Obama addressed the first high-profile Chicago anti-Iraq War rally,[194] and spoke out against the war.[195] He addressed another anti-war rally in March 2003 and told the crowd that "it's not too late" to stop the war.[196]

In a March 2007 speech, Obama said that the primary way to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons is through talks and diplomacy, without preconditions, but not ruling out military action.[197] In August 2007, Obama remarked that "it was a terrible mistake to fail to act" against a 2005 meeting of al-Qaeda leaders that U.S. intelligence had confirmed to be taking place in Pakistan.[198]

Obama stated in 2007 that he would enact budget cuts in the range of tens of billions of dollars, stop investing in "unproven" missile defense systems, not weaponize space, "slow development of Future Combat Systems", and work towards eliminating all nuclear weapons. Obama favors ending development of new nuclear weapons, reducing the current U.S. nuclear stockpile, enacting a global ban on production of fissile material, and seeking negotiations with Russia to reduce the pressure on both sides for intercontinental ballistic missiles to be on high-alert status.[199]

Obama has called for more assertive action to oppose genocide in the Darfur region of Sudan.[200] He has divested $180,000 in personal holdings of Sudan-related stock, and has urged divestment from companies doing business in Iran.[201]
Family and personal life
Barack and Michelle Obama, their children, and her mother, along with the Easter Bunny, on a balcony waving.
Barack Obama together with his family and the Easter Bunny, as they wave from the South Portico of the White House to guests attending the White House Easter Egg Roll.
Main articles: Early life and career of Barack Obama and Family of Barack Obama

In a 2006 interview, Obama highlighted the diversity of his extended family: "It's like a little mini-United Nations", he said. "I've got relatives who look like Bernie Mac, and I've got relatives who look like Margaret Thatcher."[202] Obama has seven half-siblings from his Kenyan father's family, six of them living, and a half-sister with whom he was raised, Maya Soetoro-Ng, the daughter of his mother and her Indonesian second husband.[203] Obama's mother was survived by her Kansas-born mother, Madelyn Dunham[204] until her death on November 2, 2008,[205] two days before his election to the Presidency. In Dreams from My Father, Obama ties his mother's family history to possible Native American ancestors and distant relatives of Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederate States of America during the American Civil War.[206] Obama's great-uncle served in the 89th Division that overran Ohrdruf,[207] the first of the Nazi concentration camps to be liberated by U.S. troops during World War II.[208]

Obama was known as "Barry" in his youth, but asked to be addressed with his given name during his college years.[209] Besides his native English, Obama speaks Indonesian at the conversational level, which he learned during his four childhood years in Jakarta.[210] He plays basketball, a sport he participated in as a member of his high school's varsity team.[211]
Obama holding a basketball above his head in midair while four other players look at him. He looks toward the camera over his right shoulder.
Obama playing basketball with U.S. military at Camp Lemonier, Djibouti in 2006[212]
Obama receiving a Pittsburgh Steelers jersey from Steelers owner Dan Rooney, who campaigned for Obama in 2008[213]

Obama is a well known supporter of the Chicago White Sox, and threw out the first pitch at the 2005 ALCS when he was still a Senator.[214] In 2009, he threw out the ceremonial first pitch at the all star game while wearing a White Sox jacket.[215] He is also primarily a Chicago Bears fan in the NFL, but is known to also support the Pittsburgh Steelers,[213] and openly rooted for them in their victory in Super Bowl XLIII 12 days after Obama took office as President.[216]

In June 1989, Obama met Michelle Robinson when he was employed as a summer associate at the Chicago law firm of Sidley Austin.[217] Assigned for three months as Obama's adviser at the firm, Robinson joined him at group social functions, but declined his initial requests to date.[218] They began dating later that summer, became engaged in 1991, and were married on October 3, 1992.[219] The couple's first daughter, Malia Ann, was born on July 4, 1998,[220] followed by a second daughter, Natasha ("Sasha"), on June 10, 2001.[221] The Obama daughters attended the private University of Chicago Laboratory Schools. When they moved to Washington, D.C., in January 2009, the girls started at the private Sidwell Friends School.[222] The Obamas have a Portuguese Water Dog named Bo.[223]

Applying the proceeds of a book deal, the family moved in 2005 from a Hyde Park, Chicago condominium to a $1.6 million house in neighboring Kenwood, Chicago.[224] The purchase of an adjacent lot and sale of part of it to Obama by the wife of developer, campaign donor and friend Tony Rezko attracted media attention because of Rezko's subsequent indictment and conviction on political corruption charges that were unrelated to Obama.[225]

In December 2007, Money magazine estimated the Obama family's net worth at $1.3 million.[226] Their 2007 tax return showed a household income of $4.2 million—up from about $1 million in 2006 and $1.6 million in 2005—mostly from sales of his books.[227]

Obama is a Christian whose religious views developed in his adult life. In The Audacity of Hope, Obama writes that he "was not raised in a religious household". He describes his mother, raised by non-religious parents (whom Obama has specified elsewhere as "non-practicing Methodists and Baptists") to be detached from religion, yet "in many ways the most spiritually awakened person that I have ever known". He describes his father as "raised a Muslim", but a "confirmed atheist" by the time his parents met, and his stepfather as "a man who saw religion as not particularly useful". Obama explained how, through working with black churches as a community organizer while in his twenties, he came to understand "the power of the African-American religious tradition to spur social change".[228] He was baptized at the Trinity United Church of Christ in 1988 and was an active member there for two decades.[229] Obama resigned from Trinity during the Presidential campaign after controversial statements made by Rev. Jeremiah Wright became public.[230] After a prolonged effort to find a church to attend regularly in Washington, Obama announced in June 2009 that his primary place of worship would be the Evergreen Chapel at Camp David.[231]

Obama has tried to quit smoking several times over the years and currently uses nicotine replacement therapy, though he has acknowledged that he has not quit entirely.[232][233][234]
Cultural and political image
Group portrait of five presidential men in dark suits and ties
President George W. Bush invited then-President-elect Barack Obama and former Presidents George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and Jimmy Carter to a meeting in the Oval Office on January 7, 2009.
Main article: Public image of Barack Obama
See also: International media reaction to Barack Obama's 2008 election

Obama's family history, early life and upbringing, and Ivy League education differ markedly from those of African-American politicians who launched their careers in the 1960s through participation in the civil rights movement.[235] Obama is also not a descendent of American slaves.[236] Expressing puzzlement over questions about whether he is "black enough", Obama told an August 2007 meeting of the National Association of Black Journalists that "we're still locked in this notion that if you appeal to white folks then there must be something wrong."[237] Obama acknowledged his youthful image in an October 2007 campaign speech, saying: "I wouldn't be here if, time and again, the torch had not been passed to a new generation."[238]

Obama is frequently referred to as an exceptional orator.[239] During his pre-inauguration transition period and continuing into his presidency, Obama has delivered a series of weekly Internet video addresses.[240]
20090124 WeeklyAddress.ogv
Play video
Obama presents his first weekly address as President of the United States on January 24, discussing the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

According to the Pew Research Center, Obama's approval ratings dropped from 64% in February, 2009 to 49% in December, a trend similar to Ronald Reagan's and Bill Clinton's first years.[241]

Obama's international appeal has been described as a defining factor for his public image.[242] Polls show strong support for Obama in other countries,[243] and he has met with prominent foreign figures including then-British Prime Minister Tony Blair,[244] Italy's Democratic Party leader and then Mayor of Rome Walter Veltroni,[245] and French President Nicolas Sarkozy.[246]

According to a May 2009 poll conducted by Harris Interactive for France 24 and the International Herald Tribune, Obama was rated as the most popular world leader, as well as the one figure most people would pin their hopes on for pulling the world out of this economic downturn.[247]

Obama won Best Spoken Word Album Grammy Awards for abridged audiobook versions of Dreams from My Father in February 2006 and for The Audacity of Hope in February 2008.[248] His "Yes We Can" speech, which artists independently set to music, was viewed by 10 million people on YouTube in the first month,[249] and received a Daytime Emmy Award.[250] In December 2008, Time magazine named Barack Obama as its Person of the Year for his historic candidacy and election, which it described as "the steady march of seemingly impossible accomplishments".[251]

On October 9, 2009, the Norwegian Nobel Committee announced that Obama had won the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize "for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples".[252] Obama accepted this award in Oslo, Norway on December 10, 2009, with "deep gratitude and great humility."[253] The award drew a mixture of praise and criticism from world leaders and media figures.[254][255] Obama is the fourth U.S. president to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize and the third to become a Nobel laureate while in office.

--

Edison Arantes do Nascimento,[6] KBE (born 23 October 1940), best known by his nickname Pelé (Brazilian Portuguese pronunciation: [peˈlɛ], usual English pronunciation: /ˈpɛleɪ/) is a retired Brazilian football player. While his birth certificate shows his first name as Edison, it is as Pelé that he has become a sporting legend. He is widely regarded by polls among football experts, former players and fans as the greatest footballer of all time.[7][8][9][10]

In his native Brazil, Pelé is hailed as a national hero. He is known for his accomplishments and contributions to the game of football[11] in addition to being officially declared football ambassador of the world by FIFA and a national treasure by the Brazilian government.[citation needed] He is also acknowledged for his vocal support of policies to improve the social conditions of the poor (when he scored his 1,000th goal he dedicated it to the poor children of Brazil).[12] During his career, he became known as "The King of Football" (O Rei do Futebol), "The King Pelé" (O Rei Pelé) or simply "The King" (O Rei)[13].

Spotted by football star Waldemar de Brito,[14] Pelé began playing for Santos at 15 and his national team at 16, and won his first World Cup at 17. Despite numerous offers from European clubs, the economic conditions and Brazilian football regulations at the time benefited Santos, thus enabling them to keep Pelé for almost two decades until 1974. Pelé played as an inside forward, striker, and what later became known as the playmaker position. Pelé's technique and natural athleticism have been universally praised and during his playing years he was renowned for his excellent dribbling and passing, his pace, powerful shot, exceptional heading ability, and prolific goalscoring.

He is the all-time leading scorer of the Brazil national football team and is the only footballer to be a part of three World Cup-winning squads. In 1962 he was on the Brazilian squad at the start of the World Cup but because of an injury suffered in the second match, he wasn't able to play the remainder of the tournament. In November 2007 FIFA announced that he would be awarded the 1962 medal retroactively, making him the only player in the world to have three World Cup winning medals.

Since his retirement in 1977, Pelé has been a worldwide ambassador for football and has undertaken various acting roles and commercial ventures.

Early years

Pelé was born in Três Corações, Brazil, the son of a Fluminense footballer Dondinho (born João Ramos do Nascimento) and Maria Celeste Arantes.[15] He was named after the American inventor Thomas Edison,[16] however his parents decided to remove the 'i' and call him 'Edson'. But there was a mistake on the birth certificate, leading many documents to show his name as 'Edison', not 'Edson', as he is actually called. He was originally nicknamed Dico by his family.[14][15][17] He did not receive the nickname "Pelé" until his school days, when it is claimed he was given it because of his pronunciation of the name of his favorite player, local Vasco da Gama goalkeeper Bilé, which he misspoke but the more he complained the more it stuck. In his autobiography, Pelé stated he had no idea what the name means, nor did his old friends.[15] Apart from the assertion that the name is derived from that of Bilé, the word has no known meaning, although it is the name of a Hawaiian volcano goddess and it does resemble the Irish language word peile, meaning football.[18]

Pele grew up in poverty in Bauru, São Paulo. He earned extra money by working in tea shops as a servant. Taught to play by his coach, he could not afford a proper football and usually played with either a sock stuffed with newspaper, tied with a string[15] or a grapefruit.[19]

In 1954, several members of the Ameriquinha team, including Pelé, were invited to join the Baquinho boys' team to be managed by former Brazilian international Waldemar de Brito, who played in the 1934 World Cup in Italy.[citation needed]

At the age of fifteen, he joined the Santos FC junior team. He played for one season before joining the senior team.
Club career
Santos
The marks that Pelé left inside the Maracanã Stadium

In 1956, de Brito took Pelé to Santos, an industrial and port city in the state of São Paulo, to try out for professional club Santos Futebol Clube telling the directors at Santos that the 15-year-old would be "the greatest football player in the world."[20]

During his time at Santos, Pelé played alongside many gifted players, including Zito, Pepe, and Coutinho; the latter partnered him in numerous one-two plays, attacks, and goals.

Pelé made his debut for Santos in 7 September 1956, scoring one goal in a 7–1 friendly victory over Corinthians.[21] When the 1957 season started, Pelé was given a starting place in the first team and, at the age of just 16, became the top scorer in the league. Just ten months after signing professionally, the teenager was called up to the Brazil national team. After the World Cup in 1962, wealthy European clubs such as Real Madrid, Juventus and Manchester United tried to sign the young player, but the government of Brazil declared Pelé an "official national treasure" to prevent him from being transferred out of the country.[22]

On 19 November 1969, Pelé scored his 1000th goal in all competitions. This was a highly anticipated moment in Brazil.[16] The goal, called popularly O Milésimo (The Thousandth), occurred in a match against Vasco da Gama, when Pelé scored from a penalty kick, at the Maracanã Stadium.[16]

Pelé states that his most beautiful goal was scored at Rua Javari stadium on a Campeonato Paulista match against São Paulo rival Juventus on 2 August 1959. As there is no video footage of this match, Pelé asked that a computer animation be made of this specific goal.[16] In March 1961, Pelé scored the gol de placa (goal worthy of a plaque), a goal against Fluminense at the Maracanã which was regarded as so spectacular that a plaque was commissioned with a dedication to the most beautiful goal in the history of the Maracanã.[23]

In 1967, the two factions involved in the Nigerian Civil War agreed to a 48-hour ceasefire so they could watch Pelé play an exhibition game in Lagos.[24]
New York Cosmos

After the 1972 season (his 17th with Santos), Pelé retired from Brazilian club football although he continued to occasionally suit up for Santos in official competitive matches. Two years later, he came out of semi-retirement to sign with the New York Cosmos of the North American Soccer League (NASL) for the 1975 season. Though well past his prime at this point, Pelé is credited with significantly increasing public awareness and interest in soccer in the United States. (Previously, a video clip of Pelé scoring with a bicycle kick for the Brazilian National Team was part of the opening video montage of the popular sports TV series ABC's Wide World of Sports and was probably many Americans' initial viewing of the sport.[citation needed]) He led the Cosmos to the 1977 NASL championship, in his third and final season with the club.

On 1 October 1977, Pelé closed out his legendary career in an exhibition match between the Cosmos and Santos. Santos arrived in New York and New Jersey after previously defeating the Seattle Sounders 2–0. The match was played in front of a capacity crowd at Giants Stadium and was televised in the United States on ABC's Wide World of Sports as well as throughout the world. Pelé's father and wife both attended the match. Pelé gave a brief pre-match speech during which he asked the crowd to say the word "love" with him three times. He played the first half for the Cosmos and the second half for Santos. Reynaldo scored the first goal for Santos, kicking the ball into the net after it had deflected off the crossbar. Pelé then scored his final goal on a direct free kick, driving the ball past the diving Santos goalkeeper. At halftime, the Cosmos retired Pelé's number 10. Pelé presented his Cosmos shirt to his father, who was escorted to the field by Cosmos captain Werner Roth. During the second half, Cosmos striker Ramon Mifflin, who had replaced Pelé when he switched sides at halftime, scored on a deflected cross, and the Cosmos won the match 2–1. After the match, Pelé was embraced by the Cosmos players, including longtime rival Giorgio Chinaglia, and then ran around the field while holding an American flag in his left hand and a Brazilian flag in his right hand. Pelé was soon lifted by several Cosmos players and carried around the field.
National team career

Pelé's first international match was a 2–1 defeat against Argentina on 7 July 1957. In that match, he scored his first goal for Brazil aged 16 years and 9 months to become the youngest player to score in International football.
1958 World Cup

His first match in the World Cup was against USSR in the first round of the 1958 FIFA World Cup. He was the youngest player of that tournament, and at the time the youngest ever to play in the World Cup.[25] He scored his first World Cup goal against Wales in quarterfinals, the only goal of the match, to help Brazil advance to semifinals, while becoming the youngest ever World Cup goalscorer at 17 years and 239 days. Against France in the semifinal, Brazil was leading 2–1 at halftime, and then Pelé scored a hat-trick, becoming the youngest in World Cup history to do so.

On 19 June 1958 Pelé became the youngest player to play in a World Cup final match at 17 years and 249 days. He scored two goals in the final as Brazil beat Sweden 5–2. His first goal, a lob over a defender followed by a precise volley shot, was selected as one of the best goals in the history of the World Cup. When the match ended, he passed out on the field, and had to be attended by the medical staff.[16] He then recovered, and was visibly compelled by the victory, in tears as being congratulated by his teammates. He finished the tournament with six goals in four matches played, tied for second place, behind record-breaker Just Fontaine.
1962 World Cup

In the first match of the 1962 World Cup, against Mexico, Pelé assisted on the first goal and then scored the second one to go up 2–0 after a run past four defenders. He injured himself while attempting a long-range shot against Czechoslovakia.[16] This would keep him out of the rest of the tournament, and forced coach Aymoré Moreira to make his only lineup change of the tournament. The substitute was Amarildo, who performed well for the rest of the tournament. Yet it was Garrincha who would take the leading role and carry Brazil to their second World Cup title.
1966 World Cup

The 1966 World Cup was marked among other things for its brutal fouling on Pelé by the Bulgarian and Portuguese defenders. Brazil was eliminated in the first round, playing only three matches. Pelé scored the first goal from a free kick against Bulgaria, but due to his injury, a result of persistent fouling by the Bulgarians, he was left out for the second game against Hungary. Brazil lost that game and Pelé, although still recovering was brought back for the last crucial match against Portugal.[26] In that game João Morais brutally fouled Pelé, but was allowed to stay on field by referee George McCabe. Pelé had to stay in the field limping for the rest of the game, since substitutes were not allowed at that time. After this game he vowed he would not play again in the World Cup, a decision he would later change.[27]
1970 World Cup

When Pelé was called to the national team in early 1969, he first refused, but then accepted and played in six World Cup qualifying matches, scoring six goals. The 1970 tournament in Mexico was to be Pelé's last. Brazil's squad for the tournament featured major changes in relation to the 1966 squad. Players like Garrincha, Nilton Santos, Djalma Santos, and Gilmar had already retired, but the team, with Pelé, Rivelino, Jairzinho, Gérson, Tostão, and Clodoaldo, is widely considered one of the greatest football teams ever.[28]

In the first match, against Czechoslovakia, Pelé gave Brazil a 2–1 lead after controlling Gerson's long pass with his chest. In this match, Pelé audaciously attempted to lob goalkeeper Ivo Victor from the half-way line, only narrowly missing the Czech goal. Brazil went on to win the match, 4–1. In the first half of the match against England, he nearly scored with a header that was spectacularly saved by Gordon Banks. In the second half, he assisted Jairzinho for the only goal of the match. Against Romania, he opened the score on a direct free kick goal, a strong strike with the outside of his right foot. Later on the match he scored again to put the score 3–1. Brazil won by a final score of 3–2. In quarterfinals against Peru, Brazil won 4–2, with Pelé assisting Tostão on his team's third goal. In the semi-finals, Brazil faced Uruguay for the first time since the 1950 World Cup final round match. Jairzinho put Brazil ahead 2–1, and Pelé assisted Rivelino for the 3–1. During that match, Pelé made one of his most famous plays. Tostão gave Pelé a through ball, and Uruguay's goalkeeper Ladislao Mazurkiewicz took notice of it. The keeper ran off of his line to get the ball before Pelé, but Pelé got there first, and without touching the ball, he caused it to go past the keeper, to the latter's left, while Pelé went right. Pelé went around the goalkeeper and took a shot while turning towards the goal, but he turned in excess as he shot, and the ball drifted just wide of the far post.

Brazil played Italy in the final, with Pelé scoring the opener on a header over defender Tarcisio Burgnich. He then made assists on Jairzinho's and Carlos Alberto's goals, the latter one after an impressive collective play. Brazil won the match 4–1, keeping the Jules Rimet Trophy indefinitely. Burgnich, who marked Pelé during the match, was quoted saying "I told myself before the game, he's made of skin and bones just like everyone else — but I was wrong".[29]

Pelé's last international match was on 18 July 1971 against Yugoslavia in Rio de Janeiro. With Pelé on the field, the Brazilian team's record was 67 wins, 14 draws, and 11 losses, and went on to win three World Cups. Brazil never lost a match while fielding both Pelé and Garrincha.[30]
South American Championship

Pelé also played in the South American Championship. In the 1959 competition he was top scorer with eight goals, as Brazil came second in the tournament.
Family

On 21 February 1966, Pelé married Rosemeri dos Reis Cholby. He has two daughters Kelly Cristina (13 January 1967) and Jennifer (1978) as well as a son Edson ("Edinho" – little Edson, 27 August 1970). The couple divorced in 1978.

His eldest son Edinho was arrested for drug possession in 2005.

Since April 1994 Pelé has been married to psychologist and gospel singer Assíria Lemos Seixas, who gave birth on 28 September 1996 to twins Joshua and Celeste through fertility treatments.
Honours
Club

* Santos (Official Tournaments)
o Campeonato Paulista: 1958, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1964, 1965, 1967, 1968, 1969 and 1973[31]
o Torneio Rio-São Paulo: 1959, 1963, 1964, and 1966[32] [33]
o Torneio Roberto Gomes Pedrosa (Taça de Prata): 1968
o Taça Brasil: 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964 and 1965
o Copa Libertadores: 1962 and 1963
o Intercontinental Cup: 1962 and 1963
o South-American Recopa: 1968
o Recopa Intercontinental: 1968
* New York Cosmos
o NASL Champions: 1977

Friendly Club tournaments

(not officially organized by FIFA) short-term international tournaments, a very common event on the 1960s. The present FIFA Club World Cup's format, for example, resemble much of them. These tournaments had as lead entrants, the European, and South American Champions.

* Teresa Herrera Trophy : 1959
* Tournament of Valencia : 1959
* Dr. Mario Echandi Trophy : 1959
* Pentagonal Tournament of Mexico : 1959
* Gialorosso Trophy : 1960 [34]
* Tournament of Paris : 1960, 1961 [35]
* Tournament of Italy : 1961
* Tournament of Costa Rica : 1961
* Tournament of Caracas : 1965
* Quadrangular Tournament of Buenos Aires : 1965
* Hexagonal Tournament of Chile : 1965, 1970
* Tournament of New York : 1966
* Amazonia Tournament : 1968
* Quadrangular Tournament of Rome/Florence : 1968
* Pentagonal Tournament of Buenos Aires : 1968
* Octagonal Tournament of Chile (Taça Nicolau Moran) : 1968
* Tournament of Cuiabá : 1969
* Tournament of Kingstone : 1971 [36]

Country

* Brazil
o Roca Cup:
+ Winner (2): 1957, 1963
o FIFA World Cup:
+ Winner (3): 1958, 1962, 1970
+ Appearances (4): 1958, 1962, 1966, 1970

The tally of official 32 team trophies makes him the player with most career titles.
Individual

[37][38]

* Santos
o Campeonato Paulista top scorer (11): 1957-1965, 1969, 1973.

* BBC Sports Personality of the Year Overseas Personality:
o Winner (1): 1970

* FIFA World Cup Golden Ball (Best Player):
o Winner (1): 1970

* Athlete of the Century, elected by world wide journalists, poll by French daily L'Equipe: 1981

* Inducted into the American National Soccer Hall of Fame in 1993.[39]

* Knight Commander of the British Empire: 1997 [40]

* Athlete of the Century, by Reuters News Agency: 1999

* Athlete of the Century, elected by International Olympic Committee: 1999

* UNICEF Football Player of the Century: 1999

* Time Magazine One of the 100 Most Important People of the 20th Century: 1999 [41]

* FIFA Player of the Century : 2000 (view : http://www.fifa.com/classicfootball/players/player=63869/bio.html )

* Football Player of the Century, elected by France Football's Golden Ball Winners : 1999

* Football Player of the Century, by IFFHS International Federation of Football History and Statistics: 1999

* South America Football Player of the Century, by IFFHS International Federation of Football History and Statistics: 1999

* Laureus World Sports Awards Lifetime Achievement Award from South African President Nelson Mandela: 2000

In December 2000, Pelé and Maradona shared the prize of FIFA Player of the Century by FIFA. The award was originally intended to be based upon votes in a web poll, but after it became apparent that it favoured Diego Maradona, many observers complained that the Internet nature of the poll would have meant a skewed demographic of younger fans who would have seen Maradona play, but not Pelé. FIFA then appointed a "Family of Football" committee of FIFA members to decide the winner of the award. The committee chose Pelé. Since Maradona was winning the Internet poll, however, it was decided he and Pelé should share the award.

* International Olympic Committee "Athlete of the Century"[37]

* BBC Sports Personality of the Year Lifetime Achievement Award:
o Winner (1): 2005

A consensus of media and expert polls rank Pelé as the greatest footballer of all time.[42]
Career statistics
Goalscoring and appearance record

Pelé's goalscoring record is often reported as being 1280 goals in 1363 games.[43] This figure includes goals scored by Pelé in non-competitive club matches, for example, international tours Pelé completed with Santos and the New York Cosmos, and games Pelé played in for armed forces teams during his national service in Brazil.[44]

The tables below record every goal Pelé scored in major club competitions for Santos and the New York Cosmos. During much of Pelé's playing career in Brazil there was no national league championship. From 1960 onwards the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) were required to provide meritocratic entrants for the then-new Copa Libertadores, a South American international club competition broadly equivalent to the European Cup. To enable them to do this, the CBF organised two national competitions: the Taça de Prata and Taça Brasil. A national league championship, the Campeonato Brasileiro, was first played in 1971, alongside traditional state and interstate competitions such as the Campeonato Paulista and the Torneio Rio-São Paulo.

The number of league goals scored by Pelé is listed as 589 in 605 games. This number is the sum of the goals scored by Pelé in domestic league-based competitions: the Campeonato Paulista (SPS), Torneio Rio-São Paulo (RSPS), Taça de Prata and Campeonato Brasileiro. The Taça Brasil was a national competition organised on a knockout basis.

After football
Pelé, right, with Brazil President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, left, and First Lady Marisa, 13 July 2004.

Prime Licensing, the company created and owned by the long time friend and fashion businessman Jose Alves de Araujo, now manages the Pele brand including contracts with Puma AG, Pelestation, QVC, Fremantle Media, Pele L'uomo and Pele Arena coffee houses, amongst others.[51]

The most notable area of Pelé's life since football is his ambassadorial work for various bodies. In 1992, Pelé was appointed a United Nations ambassador for ecology and the environment.

He was awarded Brazil's Gold Medal for outstanding services to the sport in 1995, Brazilian President Fernando Henrique Cardoso appointed him to the position of "Extraordinary Minister for Sport" and he was appointed a UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador. During this time he proposed legislation to reduce corruption in Brazilian football, which became known as the Pelé law. Pelé left his position in 2001 after he was accused of involvement in a corruption scandal, although nothing has been proved so far.[52] In 1997 he was given an honorary British knighthood.
Pelé at Bramall lane, celebrating Sheffield's 150th anniversary

Pelé scouted for Premier League Fulham in 2002.[53] He was chosen to do the draw for the qualification groups for the 2006 FIFA World Cup finals.[54]

Pelé has published several autobiographies, starred in documentary and semi-documentary films and composed various musical pieces, including the entire soundtrack for the film Pelé in 1977. He appeared, alongside other footballers of the 1960s and 1970s, Michael Caine, and Sylvester Stallone, in the 1981 film Escape to Victory, about an attempted escape from a World War II German POW Camp. Pelé was featured in a video game with the Atari 2600 Pelé's Soccer.[citation needed]

Pelé signed a major autobiographical book deal in 2006, resulting in a giant-sized, 45 cm × 35 cm, 2,500 unit limited-edition collectible "Pelé", created by UK luxury publishers, Gloria, as the first-ever football "big book". In the same period, Pelé received a lifetime achievement award from the BBC and in June 2006, helped inaugurate the 2006 FIFA World Cup finals, alongside supermodel Claudia Schiffer. Pelé has also helped to promote viagra and raise the awareness of impotency.[55]

Pelé was guest of honour at the world's oldest football club, Sheffield's 150th anniversary match v Inter Milan in November 2007. Inter won 5–2 in front of an appreciative crowd of nearly 19,000 at Bramall Lane. As part of his visit, Pelé opened an exhibition which included the first public showing in 40 years of the original hand written rules of football.[56]

In 2009, he cooperated with Ubisoft on arcade football game Academy of Champions for the Wii and also appeared in the game as a coach to the player.[57]
Acting and film career

* Os Estranhos (1969) (TV series)
* O Barão Otelo no Barato dos Bilhões (1971)
* A Marcha (1973)
* Os Trombadinhas (1978)
* Escape to Victory (1981)
* A Minor Miracle (1983)
* Pedro Mico (1985)
* Os Trapalhões e o Rei do Futebol (1986)
* Hotshot (1987)
* Solidão, Uma Linda História de Amor (1990)
* Mike Bassett: England Manager (2001)
* ESPN SportsCentury (2004)
* Pelé Eterno (2004) - a documentary about Pelé's career


--

Ruud Gullit
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Ruud Gullit Cobi Jones (left) and Ruud Gullit leaving Wellington International Airport
Guillit (right) with Cobi Jones.
Personal information
Full name Ruud Dil / Gullit
Date of birth September 1, 1962 (1962-09-01) (age 47)
Place of birth Amsterdam, Netherlands
Height 1.86 m (6 ft 1 in)[1]
Playing position Defender/Midfielder/Striker
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)†
1979–1982 HFC Haarlem 091 0(32)
1982–1985 Feyenoord 085 0(31)
1985–1987 PSV 068 0(46)
1987–1993 AC Milan 171 0(56)
1993–1994 Sampdoria 031 0(16)
1994 AC Milan 008 00(3)
1994–1995 Sampdoria 022 00(9)
1995–1998 Chelsea 032 00(4)
Total 454 (175)
National team
1979 Netherlands U21 004 00(1)
1981–1994 Netherlands 066 0(17)
Teams managed
1996–1998 Chelsea
1998–1999 Newcastle United
2004–2005 Feyenoord
2007–2008 Los Angeles Galaxy
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

About this sound Ruud Gullit (help·info) (born as Ruud Dil, September 1, 1962 in Amsterdam) is a Dutch football manager and former player, who played professionally in the 1980s and 1990s. He was the captain of the Netherlands national team that was victorious at Euro 88 and was also a member of the squad for the 1990 World Cup. He was named the European Footballer of the Year in 1987 and the World Soccer Player of the Year in 1987 and 1989. He was a versatile player, playing in numerous positions during his career. He last managed the Los Angeles Galaxy in Major League Soccer after taking over in November 2007.

Early life

Gullit was born Ruud Dil in Amsterdam to George Gullit, an Afro-Surinamese migrant, and his mistress Ria Dil from the Amsterdam Jordaan inner city district. The family lived in one split level room on the top floor of a small apartment building. Gullit's father worked as an economics teacher at a local school, his mother as a cleaner at the Rijksmuseum.

Gullit developed his football skills in the confines of the Rozendwarsstraat, street football was instrumental in his formative years. Gullit's first team were the Meerboys, where he joined as a junior in 1970. However, at the age of 10 Gullit moved from the Jordaan to Amsterdam Old West where he played street football alongside Frank Rijkaard. Gullit joined the DWS club after his move, and came to the attention of the Dutch youth team, where he played alongside such future greats as Erwin Koeman, Ronald Koeman and Wim Kieft.

It was during his time at DWS that Ruud first took to using his father's surname, rather than his registered surname, as he thought it sounded more like a football player.[2] He retained his mother's surname, officially, and continues to sign all contracts as Ruud Dil.
[edit] Club career
[edit] HFC Haarlem

In 1978, he signed professionally for HFC Haarlem under coach and former West Bromwich Albion F.C. player Barry Hughes. Gullit made 91 league appearances for Haarlem, scoring 32 goals. Gullit made his debut for the club at just 16 years old, becoming at the time the youngest player in the history of the Eredivisie.[3] In his first year at Haarlem they finished bottom of the Eredivisie, but bounced back the following season winning the Eerste Divisie. Gullit was named as the best player in the Eerste Divisie that season.[4] in recognition of his outstanding efforts. In the 1981-2 season Gullit was in fine form as Haarlem finished 4th and qualified for Europe for the only time in their history. In that same season Gullit scored the goal he would later consider his finest, "Playing against Utrecht I went past four defenders and then the goalkeeper, and scored. It was an unforgettable goal for me."[5] Hughes was so impressed with the young Gullit that he described him as the "Dutch Duncan Edwards".[4]
[edit] Feyenoord

In 1982, he moved to Feyenoord, for a fee of £300,000, where he made 85 league appearances, scoring 31 goals. At Feyenoord Gullit found himself playing alongside Dutch legend Johan Cruijff, while the assistant manager was Wim van Hanegem, and they were to leave a lasting impression. Gullit's first season saw Feyenoord miss out on major honours, but the following year they completed the league and cup double. Gullit was named Dutch Footballer of the Year in recognition of his contribution to Feyenoord's success. At Feyenoord Gullit occupied an increasingly advanced role in midfield, having played predominantly as a sweeper at Haarlem.[6] While at Feyenoord Gullit became the focus of a race row as manager Thijs Libregts was alleged to have referred to Gullit as "blackie" and criticised him for being lazy, though Libregts defended himself by claiming that it was merely a nickname.[7]
[edit] PSV Eindhoven

In 1985, he moved to PSV for ƒ1.2 million (£400,000), and wound up scoring 46 goals in 68 league appearances for the team. Gullit was again named Footballer of the Year in 1986 as he helped PSV capture the Eredivisie crown, a feat they repeated the following year. It was at PSV that Gullit really began to establish himself as a world class footballer and his distinctive, dreadlocked appearance made certain that he would catch the eye of Europe's biggest clubs. Gullit was also singled out for criticism by large numbers of Feyenoord supporters, who branded him a "wolf" and accused him of moving to Eindhoven for money.[8]
[edit] A.C. Milan

Silvio Berlusconi signed Gullit for AC Milan in 1987, paying the then record fee of ƒ18 million (£6 million) as a replacement for Ray Wilkins. Among his teammates at that club were compatriots Marco van Basten and Frank Rijkaard, along with Paolo Maldini and Franco Baresi. When he arrived at Milan, Gullit initially struggled to settle as he spoke no Italian and was unused to living in a foreign country.[9] However, Gullit's first season at Milan saw the club win Scudetto for the first time in 9 years, under coach Arrigo Sacchi. He was initially used on the right of an attacking trio alongside Van Basten and Pietro Virdis, but after an injury to Van Basten it was changed to a front two. The following season Milan built on their domestic success by adding the European Cup to their list of honours. Their scintillating 5-0 demolition of Real Madrid in the semi-final second leg came at a cost, as Gullit suffered an injury and required surgery to be fit in time for the final. That performance was followed by a 4-0 victory over Steaua Bucharest in the 1989 final with Gullit scoring two crucial goals. The following year Milan retained the trophy as they defeated Benfica in the 1990 final.

Gullit's exploits with first PSV and then Milan helped him win the European Footballer of the Year award in 1987 which he dedicated to Nelson Mandela.[10] However, serious injuries sustained to the ligaments of his right knee limited Gullit's playing time and he managed just 2 domestic games in the 1989-90 season.

In 1990-91 Milan's pursuit of a third consecutive European Cup was cut short by Olympique de Marseille at the semi-final stage. Having drawn the first leg at the San Siro, Milan trailed to a Chris Waddle goal with little time remaining when the floodlights went out. After a short delay the lighting was restored, but Milan had returned to their dressing room and refused to return to complete the game. UEFA awarded Marseille a 3-0 victory and expelled Milan from all European competitions for the following season.

While Milan continued their domestic dominance by winning Serie A in both 1991-92 (a season in which they went undefeated) and 1992-93, Gullit's position was an increasingly peripheral one. This was demonstrated by his omission from the UEFA Champions League Final 1993 final as under the UEFA rules clubs were only allowed to field 3 foreigners.
[edit] Chelsea F.C.

In July 1995, he signed for Chelsea on a free transfer. Initially played as sweeper by manager Glenn Hoddle with limited success, Gullit was moved to his more familiar role in midfield, where he scored six goals. The signing of Gullit, alongside the likes of Mark Hughes and Dan Petrescu, propelled Chelsea to the semi-final of the FA Cup but their league form was disappointing.

Gullit's earliest difficulty in England was adapting to the abilities of some of his Chelsea teammates, "I would take a difficult ball, control it, make space and play a good ball in front of the right back, except that he didn’t want that pass. Eventually Glenn said to me, ‘Ruud, it would be better if you do these things in midfield’."[11] However, his adjustment was rapid and he ended the season by being named runner-up to Eric Cantona as Footballer of the Year.

Gullit has since often stated in interviews that it was in London he enjoyed his career the most and felt happiest.[11] In moving to Chelsea, Gullit played an important part in the "foreign revolution" as numerous high profile international stars, such as the prolific German World Cup winner Jürgen Klinsmann, Italian superstar Gianfranco Zola who became a Chelsea legend, and Dutch magician Dennis Bergkamp, joined Premiership clubs and helped to increase its worldwide profile.
[edit] National team

In 1981, on his 19th birthday, Gullit made his international debut as a substitute for the Dutch national team against Switzerland, a game the Dutch lost 2-1.

Gullit's early international career was marred by disappointment as the Dutch failed to qualify for the 1982 FIFA World Cup and Euro 84. The Dutch missed out in 1984 on goals scored as the Spanish trounced minnows Malta 12-1 in their final qualifying game, when they needed an 11 goal victory to qualify.

There was further disappointment in 1986 when the Dutch missed out on qualification for the World Cup at the hands of neighbours Belgium in a play-off. Having lost 1-0 in Belgium, the Dutch appeared to be set for qualification in Rotterdam as they led 2-0 until Georges Grun put the Belgians through on away goals.

However, Gullit was one of the key players for the Dutch team helping his country win the Euro 88 under coach Rinus Michels. Having lost their opening game of the tournament to the USSR the Dutch beat England and Republic of Ireland to reach the semi-finals. After defeating West Germany 2-1 in Hamburg the Dutch faced the Soviet Union in the final. Gullit opened the scoring with a well-placed header and Marco van Basten scored an incredible volley to cap a 2-0 win. Ruud Gullit was thus the first Dutch captain to hold aloft international silverware.

The Dutch travelled to Italia 90 as one of the favourites, but the team failed to perform as expected. Gullit's knee injuries clearly hampered his play, and his only moment of brilliance was a superb dribble and shot against Ireland which helped the Netherlands qualify for the second round. There they met W Germany in one of the most exciting games of the tournament, though the game was marred by an altercation between Frank Rijkaard and Rudi Voller. The Germans gained revenge for their defeat at Euro 88, by beating the Netherlands 2-1 and going on to win the tournament.

1992 saw the Dutch again among the favourites for silverware in Sweden at Euro 92. Gullit appeared in imperious form against Scotland in their opening game of the tournament as he supplied Dennis Bergkamp with an easy goal. But after drawing with Russia and beating Germany, the Dutch suffered a shock exit on penalties to Denmark, who ended up winning the championship's Henri Delaunay Trophy.

In 1993 Gullit and Holland manager Dick Advocaat began what was to be a long running dispute which ultimately ended Gullit's international career. Advocaat's decision to play Gullit on the right-side of midfield, in a game against England at Wembley, rather than his usual central position upset Gullit and this was exacerbated by his substitution for Marc Overmars.[7] Gullit refused to play for the national team following this but later changed his mind and agreed to return, facing Scotland in May 1994. Shortly before the 1994 FIFA World Cup, Gullit walked out of pre-tournament training camp and would never play international football again.
[edit] Playing style

Gullit epitomised the ethos of Total Football as he was naturally adept in several positions. His foremost attribute was his athleticism, as he used his strength and speed to great effect, as well as being excellent in the air.[12] Yet unusually for a man of his stature Gullit also possessed outstanding natural balance and poise that gave a graceful style to his game. Gullit thus combined technical ability with physical presence to become an iconic figure in world football.[13]

Gullit's brilliance prompted George Best to comment in 1990, "Ruud Gullit is a great player by any standards. He has all the skills. He's not afraid to do things with the ball. And he looks as if he's enjoying every second of it. By my reckoning that's what makes him an even better player than Maradona. Both have the key quality you will find in all the best players: balance. You just can't knock them off the ball. It was the same with Pelé, Beckenbauer and Cruijff."[14]
[edit] Managerial career
[edit] Chelsea FC

In the summer of 1996, when Glenn Hoddle left Chelsea to become manager of the England national team, Gullit was appointed as a player-manager. Gullit made a promising start to his managerial career when in the first season as a player-manager he guided Chelsea to an FA Cup triumph in 1997, the club's first major trophy in 26 years. Gullit became the first non-British manager to win the FA Cup. The club also finished at a credible sixth place in the Premiership. The following season, with Chelsea in second place in the Premiership and proceeding to the quarterfinals in two cup competitions, he was sacked, allegedly for a disagreement with the club's board over the compensation, though Gullit himself disputed this.[15] He was replaced by Gianluca Vialli, a man he had helped to bring to the club.
[edit] Newcastle United

In 1998, he was named manager of Newcastle United F.C., and his managerial career again was on track, with an FA Cup final appearance in his first year. In the following season, fans began to turn against him after a poor run of results, and a well-publicised contretemps with star striker and local hero Alan Shearer and captain Robert Lee did not put him in a favourable light.[16] Gullit even refused to assign Lee a squad number, giving Lee's number 7 to new signing Kieron Dyer. In a match between Newcastle and local rivals Sunderland following the latter's return to the Premiership, Gullit, to the surprise of many, left the usually starting strikers Alan Shearer and Duncan Ferguson on the bench. Newcastle lost 2-1, although it was 1-1 when Shearer came on. Gullit resigned three days later, after only five games into the 1999-2000 season.[17]
[edit] Feyenoord Rotterdam

Before the start of the 2004/2005 season, he took charge of Feyenoord, quitting at the end of that season without winning any trophies to be replaced by Erwin Koeman. Feyenoord had finished a disappointing 4th in the Eredivisie, behind Ajax, PSV and AZ.
[edit] Los Angeles Galaxy

On November 8, 2007, Ruud Gullit became head coach for the Los Angeles Galaxy, signing a 3-year contract.[18]

Gullit's managerial style was criticized by former Galaxy player Abel Xavier, in which he claimed that Gullit had frictions with most of the team and that he did not have respect for most of the players.[19]

On August 11, 2008, Gullit resigned as coach from the Los Angeles Galaxy citing personal reasons. This followed a seven-game winless streak.[20]
[edit] Media career

In 1988 Ruud Gullit scored a No.3 hit with the anti-apartheid song South Africa in the Dutch Top 40 together with the reggae band Revelation Time. Previously he had a modest hit in 1984 with the song Not the dancing kind.

After his spell at Newcastle, Gullit spent several years working as a football commentator, having previously coined the term "sexy football"[21] during his spell as a BBC pundit during Euro 96 which was at a time Gullit was still playing professionally for Chelsea. Gullit used the term to describe teams, such as Portugal at that tournament,[22] who played attractive football with an emphasis on the defense-penetrating pass-and-move game.

By 2006, Gullit had a talk show on Dutch TV, where he has interviewed, amongst others, Nelson Mandela.[10] When Gullit was named winner of the Ballon d'Or in 1987, he dedicated the award to the then imprisoned Nelson Mandela. At the time, Gullit was signed to AC Milan and the Italians raised their eyebrows, "Nelson who?". Gullit tried to explain and they said, ‘Oh, a footballer with political beliefs’. Gullit has since in interviews told that he met Nelson Mandela after he was released and Mandela said, ‘Ruud, I have lots of friends now. When I was on the inside, you were one of the few’.[11]

In 2007 Gullit recalled, "Four months ago I visited Robben Island and met three guys who were cell-mates of Nelson Mandela. They remembered my dedicating my award in 1987 to Mandela and they said they couldn’t believe what I had done, and were sure the football authorities would withdraw the award. That's what apartheid did to them, it made them believe injustice was a normal part of life." [11]

He also appeared as a pundit for ITV during the 2006 FIFA World Cup and works as an analyst for the UEFA Champions League games on Sky Sports and Al Jazeera Sports.
[edit] Personal life

Gullit has been married three times and has six children:

* Yvonne de Vries - 1984 to 1991: two children, daughters Felicity and Charmayne.
* Cristina Pensa - 1994 to May 2000: two children, son Quincy and daughter Sheyenne.
* Estelle Cruijff - 3 June 2000–present: She is the niece of Johan Cruijff. They have two children, son Maxim and daughter Joëlle.

[edit] Sponsors

Gullit was sponsored in 1990 to wear a black and white football boot made by Italian sports brand Lotto. The boot he wore was the Lotto Stadio 90, a boot which was initially created for the 1990 FIFA World Cup.
[edit] Club Playing Honours

HFC Haarlem

* Eerste Divisie: 1981

Feyenoord Rotterdam

* Eredivisie: 1984
* KNVB Cup: 1984

PSV Eindhoven

* Eredivisie: 1986, 1987

Associazione Calcio Milan 1st spell

* Serie A: 1988, 1992, 1993
* Supercoppa Italiana: 1988, 1992
* UEFA Champions League: 1989, 1990
* UEFA Super Cup: 1989, 1990
* Intercontinental Cup: 1989, 1990

Unione Calcio Sampdoria

* Coppa Italia: 1994
* Lotto Cup: 1993

Associazione Calcio Milan 2nd spell

* Supercoppa Italiana: 1994

Chelsea F.C.

* FA Cup: 1997

[edit] International Playing Honours

Netherlands National Football Team

* European Championship: 1988
* Nasazzi's Baton: 1985, 1986

[edit] Individual Playing Honours

* 1981
o Netherlands Player of the Year (2° level)
* 1984
o Dutch Footballer of the Year
o Netherlands Cup Top Scorer: (9 goals)
* 1986
o Dutch Footballer of the Year
o Dutch Golden Shoe Winner
o Netherlands League Silver Top Scorer : (24 goals)
* 1987
o World Soccer Player of the Year 39%
o European Footballer of the Year France Football : and Silver Ball in 1988
o Dutch Sportsman of the Year
o FIFA World Player of the Year
* 1988
o Onze d' Silver
o Silver World Soccer Player of the Year
o Bronze Best World Player of the Year IFFHS
o Silver Ball, Boot 1988 European Championship : (1 goal)
* 1989
o World Soccer Magazine World Footballer of the Year 24%
o Onze d' Silver
o Silver Best Player of the Year UEFA
o Bronze Best World Player of the Year IFFHS
o Dream Team European Championship : 1988, 1992
* 1993
o Bronze World Soccer Magazine World Footballer of the Year
* 1996
o Silver Ball English League Player of the Year
o Best Player of the Year Chelsea
* 2004
o Named in FIFA 100
o 1979-1997 Total of goals in official matches: 617 matches 238 goals.

--

Marcel "Marco" van Basten (31 October 1964) is a Dutch football manager and former head coach of Eredivisie side AFC Ajax and the Dutch national team. Previously, he was a football player who played for Ajax and A.C. Milan in the 1980s and early 1990s. He is regarded as one of the greatest forwards of all time and scored 277 goals in a career cut short by injury. Known for his strength on the ball, his tactical awareness and spectacular strikes and volleys, van Basten was named European Footballer of the Year three times (1988, '89 and '92) and FIFA World Player of the Year in 1992. Van Basten was voted eighth in a poll organised by the French weekly magazine France Football consulting their former Ballon d'Or winners to elect the Football Player of the Century.[3] In 2004, a nationwide pool was held for the 100 greatest Dutch people (De Grootste Nederlander) and van Basten was number 25, the second highest for a football player.
Playing career
[edit] Early years

Marco van Basten was born on 31 October 1964 in Utrecht. He began playing for a local team, EDO, when he was seven years old. A year later, he moved to UVV Utrecht. After 10 years there, he briefly played for another club from Utrecht, Elinkwijk.
[edit] Ajax

AFC Ajax signed van Basten for the 1981–82 season. He played his first game for Ajax in April 1982, scoring a debut goal in the 5–0 victory over NEC.

In the 1982–83 season, he competed with the European top scorer Wim Kieft for the position of centre forward, and scored nine goals in 20 league matches. After Kieft left for Serie A club Pisa the next season, van Basten solidified his position as the team's main attacker.

He became a top scorer in the league for four seasons from 1983–84 to 1986–87, scoring 117 goals in 112 matches. In the 1985–86 season, he scored 37 goals in 26 league matches, including six goals against Sparta Rotterdam and five against Heracles Almelo, and won the European Golden Boot. He also scored the winning goal in the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup final against Lokomotive Leipzig in 1987.
[edit] Milan

In 1987, Silvio Berlusconi signed van Basten for A.C. Milan, with fellow countrymen Ruud Gullit and Frank Rijkaard joining in 1988. In his first season, Milan won their first Scudetto in eight years, but van Basten played only 11 games and was constantly troubled by an ankle injury.

In 1988–89, van Basten won the Ballon d'Or as Europe's top footballer. He scored 19 goals in Serie A and scored two goals in the final of European Cup as Milan triumphed against Steaua Bucureşti.

In 1989–90, he became Capocannoniere, Serie A's leading goal scorer, and Milan successfully defended the European Cup after beating S.L. Benfica in the final match.

Milan struggled in the 1990–91 season, as Sampdoria won the Scudetto. After van Basten fell out with Arrigo Sacchi, Berlusconi sacked the manager. Fabio Capello took over the following season, and Milan went undefeated in the league to win another Scudetto. Van Basten scored 25 league goals, and became Capocannoniere again.

In November 1992, he became the first player to score four goals in a Champions League match. The goals came against the Swedish team IFK Göteborg.

Milan stretched their unbeaten run into the 1992–93 season, going 58 matches over two seasons before they lost a game. Van Basten played exceptionally well in the early part of the season. He was again voted the European player of the year, becoming the third player after Johan Cruyff and Michel Platini to win the award three times.

His troublesome ankle injury[4] recurred in a game against A.C. Ancona, forcing him to undergo another series of surgery. He returned for the last few games in the season, before Milan lost to Olympique de Marseille in the Champions League final. The match was van Basten's final game for the Italian club. He thereafter spent two years fighting to come back, but eventually announced retirement in 1995, at the age of 29.
[edit] After retirement

He played in the Demetrio Albertini testimonial at the San Siro in March 2006, and headed in a goal before being substituted early in the first half. On 22 July 2006, he also returned for the testimonial to celebrate the 11-year Arsenal career of Dennis Bergkamp, in what was the first game played at the new Emirates Stadium. He played in the second half for the Ajax legends team. He entered the match as part of a double substitution that also introduced Johan Cruyff.

In March 2007, Sky Sports ranked Marco van Basten the first on its list of the great footballers who had their careers cut short.[5]
[edit] The Netherlands

Van Basten's talent was already noticed at a young age and he was called up for the 1983 FIFA World Youth Championship. He made his senior debut that same year. At the UEFA Euro 1988, van Basten scored a total of five goals, including a hat trick against England, the winning goal in the semi-final against West Germany, and a spectacular volley in the final against the Soviet Union.[6] He was the tournament's top scorer and was the only player to score more than two goals.

The Dutch national team exited early in the World Cup in the 1990 FIFA World Cup, losing to West Germany in the second round. Van Basten never scored in the World Cup Finals.

The Netherlands reached the semi-final of UEFA Euro 1992 when they lost to Denmark in a penalty shootout, with Peter Schmeichel saving a penalty shot from van Basten.
[edit] Managing career
Van Basten while manager of the Netherlands.

Van Basten officially left A.C. Milan in 1995 and retired from football, stating he would never try management. However, he changed his mind and took a course with the Royal Netherlands Football Association (KNVB). His first stint as a manager was as an assistant to his former teammate John van 't Schip with the second team of AFC Ajax in 2003–04. On 29 July 2004,[7] van Basten was named the new manager of the Dutch national team, with van 't Schip as his assistant.

As a manager, he soon established himself as a man of strong principles. Van Basten famously dropped regulars like Clarence Seedorf, Patrick Kluivert, Edgar Davids and Roy Makaay and benched Mark van Bommel, because he believed that they were either past their prime or constantly underachieving.

There were also calls for van Basten to call up Dennis Bergkamp, who had retired from the national team six years earlier for a final "hurrah" as he was retiring that season. Van Basten then revealed to the media that he never intended to do so despite Bergkamp's own willingness.

For probably the first time in decades, none of the "Big Three" Clubs (AFC Ajax, PSV, and Feyenoord) provided the backbone for the national team. Instead, newcomer AZ led the way with players such as Denny Landzaat, Barry Opdam, Barry van Galen, Ron Vlaar, Jan Kromkamp and Joris Mathijsen. Other unheralded choices were Khalid Boulahrouz, Hedwiges Maduro, Ryan Babel and Romeo Castelen selected. Van Basten had also wanted to include Ivorian forward Salomon Kalou, but was thwarted when Kalou was denied Dutch citizenship by the immigration authorities headed by Rita Verdonk. Kalou eventually accepted a call-up to play for Côte d'Ivoire.
Van Basten (left) with Klaas-Jan Huntelaar during a training prior to Euro 2008.

Under his guidance, the team were unbeaten in their World Cup qualification group and made it through the group stages at the FIFA World Cup 2006, but were eliminated in a frenzied 1–0 loss to Portugal in the Round of 16. Van Basten was heavily criticised for dropping Ruud van Nistelrooy (who had scored 28 goals for the Netherlands) before this game, in favour of Dirk Kuyt, who did not score throughout the entire tournament.

In November 2006, van Basten recalled exiled A.C. Milan midfielder Clarence Seedorf for a friendly against England at the Amsterdam ArenA. In May 2007, van Basten announced the end of his long-running dispute with Real Madrid forward Ruud van Nistelrooy, who had previously declared never to play for a Dutch national squad with van Basten as its manager.[8][dead link] Other players, such as Roy Makaay, Mark van Bommel, Boudewijn Zenden, and Edgar Davids, however, remained out of favour.

Van Basten had a contract with the KNVB for managing the Dutch national side until 2008. The KNVB had expressed its wishes to extend his contract to include the World Cup qualification route to 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. On 22 February 2008, van Basten signed a four-year contract with AFC Ajax, starting from 1 July.[9] His last tournament thus was the UEFA Euro 2008, where the Netherlands surprised with a strong round 1 performance. They were beaten in an upset by Guus Hiddink's Russia in the quarter finals.

Van Basten became trainer of Ajax after Euro 2008 but resigned on 6 May 2009 after his team failed to qualify for the UEFA Champions League.
[edit] Honours
[edit] Club honours

Ajax

* UEFA Cup Winners Cup
o Winner (1): 1987
* Dutch Championship
o Winner (3): 1981–82, 1982–83, 1984–85
* Dutch Cup
o Winner (3): 1983, 1986, 1987

Milan

* European Cup (now called: UEFA Champions League)
o Winner (2): 1989, 1990
* Intercontinental Cup
o Winner (2): 1989, 1990
* European Supercup
o Winner (2): 1989, 1990
* Serie A
o Winner (3): 1987–88, 1991–92, 1992–93
* Italian Super Cup
o Winner (3): 1988, 1992, 1993

[edit] International honours

* UEFA European Championship
o Winner (1): 1988
* Nasazzi's Baton:
o Winner (1): 1985

[edit] Individual honours

* FIFA World Player of the Year: 1992
* World Soccer Player of the Year: 1988, 1992
* UEFA Best Player of the Year: 1989, 1990, 1992
* IFFHS Best Player of the Year: 1988, 1989, 1990
* Onze d'Or: 1988, 1989
* Onze d'Argent: 1987, 1992
* Bravo Award: 1987
* UEFA European Championship 1988 Top Scorer and Best Player with 5 goals
* European Footballer of the Year: 1988, 1989, 1992
* Dutch Footballer of the Year: 1984–85
* FIFA 100 (List of the greatest living footballers picked by Pelé): 2004
* European Golden Boot: 1985–86
* European Silver Boot: 1983–84
* European Cup Top Scorer: 1989
* European Cup Silver Top Scorer: 1993
* Dutch League Top Scorer: 1983–84, 1984–85, 1985–86, 1986–87
* Serie A Top Scorer: 1989–90, 1991–92
* Serie A Silver Top Scorer: 1988–89
* World Golden Boot: 1985–86

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