From the time the South demanded the return of Fort Sumter and Fort Pickens, tension had been building in expectation of Lincoln’s reply. The options available to Lincoln were limited, and those that were available were further limited by constraints of time and man-power.
Lincoln’s options were also limited by his goals. Lincoln had a set agenda, with preserving the Union at the head of the list. Lincoln also aimed to preserve Fort
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showed last 75 words of 734 total
for the Union. He could not be seen as aggressive, because if he did he risked losing the support of the border states, which could reduce the Union to nothing. To reiterate, the southern states’ hard nose attitude encouraged no deliberation, so no compromise could have ever been achieved. Lincoln, in light of this incident, might not be seen as your typical image of “Honest Abe”, but he comes shining through as a great leader.