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Wilson, Douglas L., ed.; Davis, Rodney O., ed.; Carman, Caleb. 'Caleb Carman to William H. Herndon' in 'Herndon's Informants: Letters, Interviews, and Statements About Abraham Lincoln' . Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1998. [format: book], [genre: letter]. Permission: University of Illinois Press
Persistent link to this document: http://lincoln.lib.niu.edu/file.php?file=herndon429.html


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317. Caleb Carman to William H. Herndon.

Petersburg Ills Nov 30th 1866

Friend Herndon

I Recd your letter of the 29th Reiuesting me to rite what I new Concerning Lincoln I will Commens at the first of my Knowledg of him i Saw Lincoln in Sangamon Town about the year 1826 He Came Down from Decater with Denton Ott & Hankas & Johnson [1] said Ott imploied Lincoln Hanks & Johnson to build the Boat the Boat that is spoken of so often that Lincoln worked on Lincoln Hanks & Johnson Built the boat i think the boat went Down to New Salem & then was Loaded with Corn for New Orleans — I will now inform you what my opinion was of Mr Lincoln when i first him i thought him a Green horn tho after half hours Conversation with him i found Him no Green Horn His Apperance was very od his dress was a short Roundabout of Blew Janes [2] Lite Blewe & pants of the same the pants very Short in the Leggs which Gave him a very curous Apperance with a corse pare of Stoga Shoes [3] on a Low Crownd Brod brimed Hat on this Completed his Dress after all this bad Apperance i Soon found to be a very inteligent young man His Conversation very often was a bout Books — such as Shakespear & other histories and Tale Books of all Discription in them Day He Talked about policks Considerable He semed to have the Run of politicks very well he was a John Q Aadams man & went his Lenght on that Side of politicks He was opposed to Slavery & said he thougt it a curse to the Land i liked to forgaten the Egg fried in Lincoln Low Crownd hat, at Sangamon Town one nigh at a Show it Caused a Great laff but Lincoln turned of the Joke very well as he Always did on any Occation now Lincoln is Gon Down the River to New Salem I do not so mutch about him for Some Time

I do not know wether Lincoln went to New orleans or not whare he dide I Cannot Say but he Returnd again to New Salem & became a Candidate for the Legislator for the first time and was beatan this was before Sangamon Cty was Devided the next Time he was a Candidate for the Lagislature he was Elected & made a good member — Before was Elected i had moved Down to New Salem when i first moved to that place Lincoln Borded with one Mentor Graham after that he Boarded Nelson Alley for Some Time how long i Cant Say i Baught out Alley my Self & a one horse Tavren & Lincoln came to Live with Me Boarded with me Some Two years as near as i Can Reclect Lincoln was post master & had it at my house the winter he went to Legislator i Kept the Office for him — the next time he was Elected was after he went to Springfield i think Lincolns Songs he Sang was a great many i do not think of all of them such as oald oald Suckey blew Skin & the woodpecker stoping on the hollow Beach tree [4] and a Great many others that was funny — he told a Geat many Jokes & yarns he was allways verry mery & full of fun — Lincoln once rote an Artical against Peter Cartwrgh which was a good

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one the name Sined to it was Diotrefus you may Bet it used the old man very Ruff it was a hard one it was Published in the Beardstown Cronicle by Francis Earns [5] Simeon Francis would not publish in the Sangamon Journal — you wished to know what Lincoln used to Read he Read Shakespear & histories of all kinds news papers &c you wished to know something about the time Ann Rutledg died i cannot find out the time yet but i will try find out & let you know as Soon as i can you wished to know about lincoln Reading he Read Setting Lying down & walking in the Streets he was allways Reading if he had Time, he was Some Time Surveying Some Times tending the post office Some times to law suits before a Justice of the peace you wished to know Something about Lincolns Love with Ann Rutleg this i cannot Tell mutch about it is true he Loved Miss Rutledg i suppose this hapend before i moved to Salem i saw Mr James Short about this matter he says it is not so about Lincolns Refuseing to Eat on the account of the death of Miss Rutledg — I must Come to Close for i getting tired i will Rite again i will find out about the time of Miss Rutledgs death as Soon as i can — You must Excuse my bad hand Riteing — you Can fix it up to Your notion if you can reade it —

Yours with Respect
Caleb Carman

Library of Congress: Herndon-Weik Collection. Manuscript Division. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. 2811 — 15

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Wilson, Douglas L., ed.; Davis, Rodney O., ed.; Carman, Caleb. 'Caleb Carman to William H. Herndon' in 'Herndon's Informants: Letters, Interviews, and Statements About Abraham Lincoln' . Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1998. [format: book], [genre: letter]. Permission: University of Illinois Press
Persistent link to this document: http://lincoln.lib.niu.edu/file.php?file=herndon429.html
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