'Lincoln's Last Trial': How winning a murder trial helped Lincoln become president

A new book by ABC News' chief legal analyst Dan Abrams shines a light on a surprising chapter in Abraham Lincoln's life.
2:42 | 07/14/18

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Transcript for 'Lincoln's Last Trial': How winning a murder trial helped Lincoln become president
highly ad later. Here'sco-anchor Harris. He one of the towering figures in American hist I can't listen to this anymore Abraham LINC the 1 president oe United States in the film Lincoln. No now, now. Lln is best known for Winn the civil war and abolishing slavery. Sla first, I intendo sign the 13thamendment. But a new book Dan Abrams shines a light on a surprising chapter inlincoln'slife. One of the lesser known things about Abraham Lincoln W he was a really wellnown and well respected lawyeror B president. Lincoln's last trial, the case that put him into the presidency, was of a person accused of stabbing his nor to death in 39. Lincoln was his defense attorney. Te rlly high profile. Had these two neighbors. A CLA O self-defense. But you also had a very high ofile witness. Peter cartwright, one of the be known preachers in the country. Moreell kwnn Lincoln the time. And he was the star witness for the defense. It ended in an acquittal, with a Croom star just nine montefore he became the blican nominee for president. He won T case. And this trial helpe elevate his profile. I think helped propel him to the presidency. K shows a missing chapter from the history books. Y colleague said there's a transcript outth thenly one of any Lincoln trial it S just found in 1989. It is a really coming murder L and no one knowsboutit. It casts a newht on lincols peonality. There was a ruling a critical ruling that wen against him. The people whoescribed it at the time said they had never se Lincoln like this. They hadever seen him so an he literally almost jumped E bench. And that is a sidef Lincoln that many people haven't heard about befo. Dan abramsve T case and itsinsighntoco S valuable lessons. E was someone who cared whether theosion he was taking was rig O wrong. Mostimportantly, ha great love for the law. Forghtline," Dan Harris in New York.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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