Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln. Volume 2.
Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865.
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To Joel A. Matteson [1]

His Excellency, the Governor of the State of Illinois. Springfield,
Jany. 10. 1853.

Sir: In July 1850, a man by the name of William D. Davis, was tried and convicted of the crime Manslaughter and sentenced to the Penetentiary for the term of three years, by the circuit court of Clark county, whither his case had been taken by a change of venue from Coles county. [2] I assisted in his defence, and thought his conviction was right, but that the term fixed was too long under the circumstances. I told him that if he should behave himself well for a considerable portion of the time, I would join in asking aPage  188 pardon for the remainder. He has a young family, and has lost one of his arms. He has now served about five sixths of his time; and I understand, the Warden, who is now in Springfield, testifies that he has behaved well. Under these circumstances I hope he may be released from further confinement. Your Obt. Servt.



[1]   ALS, I-Ar.

[2]   The Judge's Docket of the Clark County Circuit Court lists a ``Special or called court . . . for the trial of William D. Davis . . . July 1st. A.D. 1850.'' The court files have disappeared.

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