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Wilson, Douglas L., ed; Davis, Rodney O., ed. 'Newspaper Clipping' in 'Herndon's Informants: Letters, Interviews, and Statements About Abraham Lincoln' . Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1998. [format: book], [genre: article]. Permission: University of Illinois Press
Persistent link to this document: http://lincoln.lib.niu.edu/file.php?file=herndon584b.html


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-- 586 --

to the house designated, to which the competitors, distaff in hand, came ready for the work of the day. At a given hour the wheels were put in motion, and the filmy fibre took the form of firmly lengthened strand in their mystic hands. Tradition says Nancy bore the palm, her spools yielding the longest and finest thread.

Mr. Lincoln was not an exception to the rule for great men, which requires that their mother shall be talented. Thomas Lincoln came, it is believed, into this neighborhood to visit his uncle Mordecai Lincoln, who lived near Major Berry, and there learned of the skill of Nancy. As Ulysses, he was ambitious, and became the husband of Nancy, whose threads of gold has been worked by the hand and pen of Abraham into the warp and woof of the national constitution. Sarah Mitchell became the wife of a Virginian, and the mother of an interesting family. She was a woman of high order of talent, and retained until death the greatest veneration for the memory of her cousin, whose name she gave to one of her daughters.

Modesty has laid the impress of silence upon the relatives of a noble woman, but when the voice of calumny has presumed to sully her name, they hurl the accusation to the ground and proclaim her the beautiful character they had learned to love long before they knew to her had been given an honored son.

One who learned from sainted lips to admire her grandmother's cousin.

C.S.H.V. [1]

I have no idea who was the author, only the initials being given. But I have no doubt that it is substantially the true history. After the marriage of Thomas Lincoln and Nancy Hanks he brought her to Elizabeth Town, where he lived and worked at the carpenter trade. A house is still standing in this neighborhood, the inside work of which he did. I knew him well, he had one daughter in Elizabeth Town, and she died, after which he removed to a place called Buffalo, about 14 miles from Elizabeth Town, in the same county — Harden — now Laura. At this point Abraham was born; then they moved about four miles to the head of Knob Creek, in the same county. After which he removed to Indiana, when I lost sight of him until Nancy was dead. He then came back to Elizabeth Town and in short order married a widow Johnson, whose maiden name was Sally Burt. I was then clerk and issued the license and know all about it.

April 18, 1874.

SAM'L HAYCRAFT (in 79th year),
Elizabeth Town, Ky.

Mr. Byron M. Hanks, [2] Rochester, N.Y.

Library of Congress: Herndon-Weik Collection. Manuscript Division. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. 3155 (letter), Herndon-Weik Collection. Manuscript Division. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. 3155A — 55B (clipping)

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Wilson, Douglas L., ed; Davis, Rodney O., ed. 'Newspaper Clipping' in 'Herndon's Informants: Letters, Interviews, and Statements About Abraham Lincoln' . Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1998. [format: book], [genre: article]. Permission: University of Illinois Press
Persistent link to this document: http://lincoln.lib.niu.edu/file.php?file=herndon584b.html
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