FEBRUARY 19, 1861

The presidential party left Albany at 8:00 a.m. aboard a train car that was “one of the handsomest, perhaps, ever run in this country.” The train stopped in many small towns during the five-hour journey to New York City, and Lincoln gave brief impromptu speeches or simply waved from the train to those enthusiastically waiting to greet him. Lincoln arrived in New York City to a newly completed, yet undecorated, depot. According to the Morning Courier and New York Enquirer, Lincoln was greeted by “thunders of applause . . . deafening cheers, waving of handkerchiefs.” Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper, however, stated that while the crowd showed “much respect” there was “little enthusiasm.” Lincoln showed his sense of humor that evening at a reception during which he shook the hands of 5,000 people and reportedly “kept the attendant crowd shaking their sides with laughter.”