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Wilson, Douglas L., ed.; Davis, Rodney O., ed.; Whitney, Henry C. 'Henry C. Whitney 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=herndon627.html


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-- 630 --

a great man. Swett has always been poor except for about a year during the war: and Davis was always rich and always a hog: would it not have been well for Davis to give Swett a present of $10,000.#? But he wouldn't have given him a cent to save his life: nor would his heirs do so. But you must not mention this: Swett did not: but I can't help thinking. Had Davis not been appointed Sup. Judge he would have died, an obscure hog financially: and left no reputation behind him beyond that of a circuit Judge. still I think Lincoln did right to appoint him but awfully wrong to not give Swett anything.

Davis used to get Lincoln to hold court for him and Lincoln was always ready & willing: Davis liked to get out in town & meet the people. Lincoln held court a great deal for Davis. Lincoln was very bashful when women were called on. I once went with him to Mayor Boydens [12] at Urbana to tea: — he got on so-so while I was in the room but I was called to the gate by a client and on my return was as bashful as a school boy. Lincoln was so good natured & so willing to give advice that young lawyers went to him a great deal. He was at Urbana once prosecuting a man named A. G. Carle in Urbana for seduction & one S. H. Busey an adverse witness tried to create the impression that he was a great ladies man. Lincoln went for him in his speech thus, "there is Busey — he pretends to be a great heart smasher — does wonderful things with the girls — but I'll venture that he never entered his flesh but once & that is when he fell down & stuck his finger in his — "; right out in open Court. Things were free & easy in Urbana & Danville: There was a hard crowd used to meet us in the latter town.

Lincoln was not as gloomy in that end of the Circuit as in yours. I was Atty for the Ill. Cen. R.R. & we had a contract that Lincoln was to take no case against us & I could call on him to help me when he was there: & when my clients wanted help I always got Lincoln. The most noted cases in which Lincoln & I were together were "People v. Patterson" manslaughter "Spink v. Chiniquy" Slander from Kankakee Co. "Harvey v. Campbell" chancery case about part of Champaign City: "Dean v. Campbell Kelley: chy. case about the most valuable farm in Champaign. "People v. Barrett" murder, "Van Onum v. —— sheep rot case. Brock v. I.C.R.R. — Cunningham v. Phifer — partnership [13] When he struck one end of the Circuit I was with him continuously till he left it: after I moved to Chicago & went in with Gen. Wallace [14] he made our office his head quarters. He carried on the circuit a shirt cloak — a striped carpet bag & a faded green umbrella with cloth letters "A. Lincoln" sewed on the inside as baggage. He slept in a home made — yellow flannel undershirt. He got the inspiration for his lecture; from Bancrofts
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Wilson, Douglas L., ed.; Davis, Rodney O., ed.; Whitney, Henry C. 'Henry C. Whitney 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=herndon627.html
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