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Wilson, Douglas L., ed.; Davis, Rodney O., ed.; Lincoln, Mary Todd. 'Mary Todd Lincoln (William H. Herndon Interview)' in 'Herndon's Informants: Letters, Interviews, and Statements About Abraham Lincoln' . Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1998. [format: book], [genre: interview]. Permission: University of Illinois Press
Persistent link to this document: http://lincoln.lib.niu.edu/file.php?file=herndon357.html


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252. Mary Todd Lincoln (William H. Herndon Interview) [1].

[September 1866]

Mrs. L. was born in 1823 [2] Lexington Fayette Co Ky — 13th day of Decr Robt. S. Todd Eliza S. Parker — Mrs. Todd — her mother died when very young — Educated by Mdme Mentelle [3] — French — opposite Mr Clays — She was well Educated — French — Spoke nothing Else — not allowed to — Finished a Mr Wards accademy [4] — People from the north visited — went to School —

Came to Illinois in 1837 — was in Ills 3 months — went school 2 years after came to Ills — returned to Ills in 1839 or 40 — This after Mrs Wallace [5]

My husband intended when he was through with his Presdt time to take me & family to Europe — didnt in late days dream of death — was cheery — funny — in high Spirits. He intended to return and go to California — over the Rocy Mountains and see the prospect of the Soldiers &c digging out gold to pay national debt.

He & Sumner were like boys during his last days — down on the River after Richmond was taken — they acted like boys — were so glad the war was over. Mr L. wanted to live in Spgfd and be buried there up to 1865 — Changed his notion where to live — never settled on any place particularly — moving & travelling —

Mr L was the kindest — most tender and loving husband & father in the world — He gave us all unbounded liberty — Said to me always when I asked him for any thing — You know what you want — go and get it. He never asked me if it was necessary. He was very very indulgent to his children — chided or praised for it he always said "It is my pleasure that my children are free — happy and unrestrained by paternal tyranny. Love is the chain whereby to lock a child to its parent."

I have none of my literary scraps — poems — compositions &c — Except I know of the Shield's poetry [6]

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Mr Lincoln had a dream when down the River City Point — after Richmond was taken he dreamed that the white house burned up — sent me up the River — went — met Stanton — &c. Mr L. told me to get a party and come back — did so.

Mr L. had no hope — & no faith in the usual acceptation of those word.

He found out that N. W Edwards was stealing as he though: intended to turn him out. My husband placed great Confidence in my knowledge in human nature: he had not much knowledge of men

Library of Congress: Herndon-Weik Collection. Manuscript Division. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. 3065 — 66; Huntington Library: LN2408, 2:227 — 28

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Wilson, Douglas L., ed.; Davis, Rodney O., ed.; Lincoln, Mary Todd. 'Mary Todd Lincoln (William H. Herndon Interview)' in 'Herndon's Informants: Letters, Interviews, and Statements About Abraham Lincoln' . Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1998. [format: book], [genre: interview]. Permission: University of Illinois Press
Persistent link to this document: http://lincoln.lib.niu.edu/file.php?file=herndon357.html
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