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Wilson, Douglas L., ed.; Davis, Rodney O., ed.; Rutledge, Robert B. 'Robert B. Rutledge 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=herndon497b.html


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393. Robert B. Rutledge to William H. Herndon.

Oskaloosa Decr 4th 1866

Dear Sir

Your letter of 1st inst is before me,

And I answer, 1st I think Mr. Lincoln read Law in 1834 & 1835, read surveying probably in 1833 & 1834. 2d I cannot say whether Mr Lincoln was radically a changed man, after the event, of which you speak or not, as I saw little of him after the time, 3rd when he first came to N. Salem and up to the time of which we write, Mr Lincoln was all life and animation, seemed to see the bright side of every picture, 4th Cannot say as to his habit of learning eloquent pieces by heart, he was ever ready with an appropriate response, to any vein of humor or eloquence when occasion required, have frequently heard him repeat pieces of prose & poetry, his practise was, when He wished to indelibly fix any thing he was reading or studying on his mind, to write it down, have known him to write whole pages of books he was reading, 5th cannot tell you how he read in the woods, as I never intruded on his retirement, Simply know he read in the woods by seeing him return

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& having heard him say he had been reading in the brush, have seen him reading, walking the streets, occasionally become absorbed with his book, would stop & stand for a few moments, then walk on, or pass from one house in the town to an other, or from one crowd or squad of men to an other, apparently seeking amusement with his book under his arm, when the company or amusement became dry or irksome, he would open his book & commune with it for a time, then return it to its usual resting place, and entertain his audience, 6th as well as I remember he was not what is usually termed a quick minded man, altho he usually would arrive at his conclusions very readily, seemed invariably to reflect & deliberate, never acted from impulse, so far as to arrive at a wrong conclusion on a subject of any moment,

I desire you to learn all you can from Jas Mc Rutledge as to the breaking of the engagement — between Ann & McNamar,

Very truly yours,
R B Rutledge

Library of Congress: Herndon-Weik Collection. Manuscript Division. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. 2846 — 47

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Wilson, Douglas L., ed.; Davis, Rodney O., ed.; Rutledge, Robert B. 'Robert B. Rutledge 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=herndon497b.html
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