On the seventh day of Christmas
My true love gave to me
Seven swans-a-swimming, six geese-a-laying
Five golden rings, four calling birds
Three French hens, two turtle doves
And a partridge in a pear tree.
President Abraham Lincoln signed an act on Dec. 31, 1862 that admitted West Virginia to the Union, thus dividing Virginia in two. Rivalry had existed for years between the wealthy slaveowners to the East and the poorer miners and hill folk to the West -- divided by the Appalachian mountains. Lincoln admitted West Virginia with the condition for the gradual abolition of slavery. While many felt that West Virginia's admission as a state was both illegal and unconstitutional, Lincoln issued his Opinion on the Admission of West Virginia finding that "the body which consents to the admission of West Virginia, is the Legislature of Virginia," and that its admission was therefore both constitutional and expedient.