The American Civil War was the backdrop for Doug Conkey's most interesting talk about the Gettysburg address. In 1863 the Battle of Gettysburg, a small hamlet, took place over 3 days from the 1st to the 3rd of July. The Confederate army from the South was led by Robert E. Lee while the Northern Army was led by George Meade. 170,000 troops took part in the battle and while the South lost 25,000 men the North's casualties were 28,000.  Lee withdrew his troops and left the battleground on 5th July.
In November of that year, Abraham Lincoln went to Gettysburg to dedicate the Union (Northern Army) Cemetery. The main speaker on the day was Edward Everett, a well known politician and clergyman noted for his oratory. He spoke for one hour and fifty seven minutes. The President had been asked to offer only a "few appropriate remarks".
Lincoln's address lasted only a few short minutes and comprised 269 words, but it has come to be regarded as one of the all-time great speeches.
Doug and Wendy toured the Civil War sites and Doug has very detailed interest in that terrible conflict which saw citizens of the same country slaughter each other. The rift in the American body politic is still very evident today.
Read the speech below.

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. 

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this. 

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate -- we can not hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, 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.

Abraham Lincoln
November 19, 1863