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Lincoln's Parentage: The Myth Which Will Not Die

Nov 29, 2017
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Back on April 11, I published a post titled “Bad Lincoln ‘History'” in which I told about a new Lincoln museum in North Carolina which was established to perpetuate the myth that Abraham Lincoln was really the illegitimate son of one Abraham Enloe. This myth has persisted in some circles for more than 100 years. It claims that Lincoln was actually born in North Carolina (not Kentucky) and that his son Robert Todd Lincoln basically paid off Lincoln historians to cover up his illegitimate heritage.
This myth continues into modern times without a single shred of evidence to back up the claim. Now, an article from the Terra Haute (Indiana) Tribune-Star published just yesterday trumpets the fact that a “stunning new document” found on Genealogy Today (an online guide) presents “proof” about Lincoln’s illegitimate heritage.
Well, no. The story on that site is just more regurgitation from a gentleman by the name of R. Vincent Enlow, a descendant of the Enloes from North Carolina. He has done “research” for the past decade or so, which he claims proves the myth about Lincoln really being an Enloe. One of the pieces of evidence these revisionist “historians” love to use in their claims is the image I’ve included here. It’s a photo of a gentleman named Wesley Enloe, the supposed “half-brother” of Abraham Lincoln. Wesley was the son of Abraham Enloe, the “real” father of Lincoln. The “historians” point out the obvious height and lankiness of Wesley as strong evidence that he was related to Lincoln.
On the Genealogy Today site, you can download an essay from Mr. Enlow detailing his evidence, etc. What I don’t like about this article from this genealogy site and the article from the Tribune-Star is that this claim about Lincoln’s parentage is presented as FACT. It is bad history. It misleads readers into believing this myth and I believe is an attempt to denigrate Lincoln.
As my post from April 11 stated, Dr. Edward Steers, Junior, one of the leading Abraham Lincoln scholars of our day, carefully examined all the claims in his book “Lincoln Legends, Myths, Hoaxes, and Confabulations Associated With Our Greatest President.” His conclusion is that there is not one bit of evidence to prove that Lincoln was born in North Carolina to a father named Abraham Enloe.
We all must always be aware of attempts by revisionists who try to disparage the titans of American history for their own gains, be it in the form of mindless newspaper articles, false claims of historians on obscure websites, or books written by kooks trying to make a fast buck.
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