Pompey, who's heavily implied to be a freed slave, recites the Declaration of Independence at the schoolhouse with a picture of Abraham Lincoln on the wall behind him. He freezes up when he gets to "...that all men are created equal," so Ranse finishes it for him.
Pompey: "We hold these truths to be self-evident..." Ranse: "...that all men are created equal." That's fine, Pompey. Pompey: I knew that, Mr. Ranse, but I just plum forgot it. Ranse: That's alright, Pompey. A lot of people forgot that part.