Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln. Volume 1.
Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865.

To Benjamin F. James [1]

Dear James: Springfield, Jany. 27. 1846

Yours enclosing the article [2] from the Whig is received. In my judgment you have hit the matter exactly right. I believe it is too late to get the article in the Journal of this week; [3] but Dickinson [4] will understand it just as well from your paper, knowing, as he does, your position towards me. More than all, I wrote him at the same time I did you. As to suggestions for the committee, I would say appoint the convention for the first monday of May---as to the place, I can hardly make a suggestion, so many points desiring it. I was at Petersburg saturday and sunday; and they are very anxious for it there. A friend has also written me, desiring it at Beardstown. [5]

I would have the committee leave the mode of choosing delegates to the whigs of the different counties, as may best suit them respectively. I would have them propose, for the sake of uniformity that the delegates should all be instructed as to their man, and the delegation of each county should go as a unit. If, without this, some counties should send united delegations & others divided ones, it might make bad work.

Also have it proposed, that when the convention shall meet, if there shall be any absent delegates, the members present may fillPage  360 the vacancies, with persons to act under the same instructions, which may be known to have been given to such absentees. You understand. Other particulars I leave to you. I am sorry to say I am afraid I can not go to Mason, so as to attend to your business; but if I shall determine to go there, I will write you.

Do you hear any thing from Woodford & Marshall? Davenport, [6] ten days ago, passed through here, and told me Woodford is safe; but, though in hope, I am not entirely easy about Marshall. I have so few personal acquaintances in that county, that I can not get at [it?] right. Dickinson is doing all that any one man can do; but it seems like it is an over-task for one.

I suppose Dr. Henry will be with you on saturday. I got a letter from him to-day on the same subject as yours; and shall write him before saturday. Yours truly, A. LINCOLN


[1]   ALS, MH.

[2]   An editorial which Lincoln had requested in his letter of January 16, and which appeared in the Tazewell Whig, January 24, 1846.

[3]   Appeared in the issue for February 5, 1846.

[4]   B. F. Dickinson.

[5]   It was held at Petersburg on May 1.

[6]   Reverend William Davenport.