Inauguration Day, March 4, 1865, dawned over the city of Washington with a blustery, overcast chill. It rained early in the morning, cleared, then rained again. But even without the cooperation of the weather, thousands upon thousands - "a crowd almost numberless," wrote a visitor - braved the drizzle and cold to watch a giant parade, with now sodden floats, wheel up Pennsylvania Avenue toward the newly completed dome of the Capitol building. There, in the Capitol, the principal actor in this inauguration pageant, Abraham Lincoln, the president of the United States, was already at work, signing the last pieces of legislation passed by the outgoing Congress and witnessing a new Senate being sworn into office.
- From Fateful Lightning: A New History of the Civil War & Reconstruction by Allen C. Guelzo