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This article examines the relationship President Abraham Lincoln had with members of the Jewish faith.

Ever since George Washington, U.S. presidents have made inclusive gestures toward Jewish-American citizens and soldiers, but only Abraham Lincoln, whose 291st birthday we celebrated last week, ever officially intervened on their behalf. He did it twice within the span of two years. During his political career Lincoln had many Jewish associates, advisers and supporters.

During the Civil War General Grant issued General Order No. 11, which is also discussed. This order was a result of Grant’s perception that Jews were participating in a black market in Southern cotton, and the order required the expulsion of Jews from his “departments” of operation.