During the American Civil war, between 1861 and 1865, the White House, residence of President Abraham Lincoln was regularly besieged by people wanting to see him. These people were largely government representatives, parliamentarians, generals, diplomats but also a number of people anxious for a personal audience. They hoped for a favor for themselves, for a family member or for a friend.
A secretary would take down their name and often return saying “I’m afraid you will have to wait, the President cannot receive you right now."
In the midst of this crowd, a young boy had managed to sneak through, running past the sentry and gesturing with his hands to the secretaries. He ran in front of them, turned the handle of the door, and without knocking, he entered President Lincoln’s office.
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