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Wilson, Douglas L., ed.; Davis, Rodney O., ed.; Dickey, T. Lyle. 'T. Lyle Dickey 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=herndon504b.html


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-- 505 --

you are right in this opinion, & that our Government Can not last part free & part slave — What good is to be accomplished by inculcating that opinion (or truth if you please) in the minds of the People? — After a moment of silence & apparent reflection Mr Lincoln Said — "I do not see as there is any good to be accomplished the dissemination of the doctrine." To which replied — "I can see much harm which it may do" "You convince the whole people of this — & you necessarily make Abolitionists of all the People of the North & Slavery proponents of all South — & you precipitate a struggle which may end in disunion — The teaching of the opinion it seems to me tends to hasten the calamity" After some minutes reflection Mr Lincoln rose & approached me extending his right hand to take mine & Said —

"I dont see any necessity for teaching this doctrine — & I dont Know but it might do harm" — At all events from respect for your judgment, Dickey, Ill promise you I wont say so again during this Campaign" — We shook hands upon it & the subject was dropped — I heard no more of this time of thought [2] from Mr Lincoln until the year of 1858 — when he proclaimed it in his famous Speech at Springfield — at the Opening of that years Canvass —

If these facts are thought of any importance in history — you & the world are welcome to them —

Yours truly
T. Lyle Dickey

P.S. Thank you for copy of that fancy lecture [3] — Romance is not your forte — The few grains of history stirred into that lecture — in a plain narrative would be interesting — but I dont like the garnishments

T. L. D —

Library of Congress: Herndon-Weik Collection. Manuscript Division. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. 2867 — 68

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Wilson, Douglas L., ed.; Davis, Rodney O., ed.; Dickey, T. Lyle. 'T. Lyle Dickey 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=herndon504b.html
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