Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
Memory and the Past Quotes
How we cite our quotes:
Now Henry rose to his feet. "I have spent these three hundred years mourning a wife and child, Abraham! Mourning the life that was stolen from me; a thousand loves lost to time!" (11.119)
As Henry makes clear, being a vampire means having a different sense of time and memory. Abe may have lost one beloved almost-wife (Ann), but Henry has outlived many loves. (Although, seriously, "a thousand loves"? He's only been a vampire for 300 years or so, so that would be several loves per year. You might want to cool it, buddy.) And yet, Henry still seems to be driven by his memory of the people that Dr. Crowley killed, the same way that Abe is driven by his memory of vampires murdering his beloved. It was a long time ago, but that doesn't lessen the sting.
Lee and McClellan's armies waited quietly in the predawn hours of that Wednesday, September 17th, unaware that they were about to embark on the bloodiest day in American military history. (12.40)
The people involved in the Civil War may have some sense that they're going to be part of history, but they don't know what specific roles they're going to play, just like these generals. (Also McClellan probably didn't know that we would remember him as kind of a screw-up.)
History knows that Abe flippantly told McClellan: "If you do not want to use the army, I would very much like to borrow it." What history has never known, however, is what happened shortly before that uncomfortable picture was taken. (12.50)
There are a few times in this book where we get this notion: History remembers X, but History doesn't know Y. (History can be kind of an airhead.) It's a way for the book to make good on the promise it made in the introduction—that in this book, we'll finally learn the truth about history.