brothers suggests several times that Abraham Lincoln was gay or bisexual. In the film, Billy Eichner’s character, Bobby, even proposes adding an Abraham Lincoln exhibit to the LGBTQ+ history museum where he works. And despite the objection of one of his colleagues, the idea has indeed been chosen for development. But whether the 16th president of the United States was LGBTQ+ — let alone the first gay or bisexual U.S. president — is up for debate.
Proponents of Abraham Lincoln’s status as a gay or bisexual man, including: brothers’ main character, suggest he was dating his longtime friend and business partner Joshua Fry Speed when both men were considered singles. The evidence, which has been widely criticized, includes supposedly intimate letters shared between the two and the fact that Lincoln and Speed shared a bed during the four years they lived together.
Proof against However, the fact that Abraham Lincoln is gay or bisexual is a little more convincing. Historians point out that at that time, two men sharing a bed did not have the same sexual connotations as they do today. Rather, it was common practice, especially for people who couldn’t afford a second bed. Lincoln, who was married to his wife for 23 years until his assassination, also did not try to divorce Joshua Fry Speed when he ran for president. No opponent has ever suggested that he was gay, which would have been politically devastating at the time.
Lincoln may not have been LGBTQ+, but one president probably was
Abraham Lincoln’s predecessor as president, James Buchanan, was most likely a gay, yet incarcerated man. Buchanan, who served a single term in the White House from 1857 to 1861, met and betrothed the daughter of a wealthy ironworker, Anne Caroline Coleman, in 1818. By the time of their engagement the following year, rumors circulated that Buchanan was marrying Coleman only for her family’s money, because of the short time the couple spent together. Coleman broke off their engagement and died suddenly shortly after the breakup in December 1819. After her death, Buchanan never courted another woman—his niece, Harriet Lane, served as First Lady during his presidency.
President Buchanan’s status as a lifelong bachelor has suggested he was gay. Buchanan was romantically linked to the 13th Vice President, William Rufus King, reportedly calling him pet names, such as “Miss Nancy” and even “wife.” Between 1834 and 1844, they also attended social functions together. It has been suggested that the two men wrote intimate letters to each other, which were destroyed by their nieces. although brothers suggesting that Abraham Lincoln could have been the first LGBTQ+ president in US history, James Buchanan was in all likelihood really the first gay president of the United States of America. maybe a brothers sequel can tackle that historical gossip.
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