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

To Mary Todd Lincoln [1]

Dear Mary: Washington, April 16- 1848-

In this troublesome world, we are never quite satisfied. When you were here, I thought you hindered me some in attending to business; but now, having nothing but business---no variety---it has grown exceedingly tasteless to me. I hate to sit down and direct documents, and I hate to stay in this old room by myself. You know I told you in last sunday's letter, I was going to make a little speech during the week; but the week has passed away without my getting a chance to do so; and now my interest in the subject has passed away too. Your second and third letters have been received since I wrote before. Dear Eddy thinks father is ``gone tapila[.]'' [2] Has any further discovery been made as to the breaking into your grand-mother's house? If I were she, I would not remain there alone. You mention that your uncle John Parker is likely to be at Lexington. Dont forget to present him my very kindest regards.

I went yesterday to hunt the little plaid stockings, as you wished; but found that McKnight has quit business, and Allen had not a single pair of the description you give, and only one plaid pair of any sort that I thought would fit ``Eddy's dear little feet.'' I have a notion to make another trial to-morrow morning. If I could get them, I have an excellent chance of sending them. Mr. Warrick Tunstall, of St. Louis is here. He is to leave early this week, and to go by Lexington. He says he knows you, and will call to see you; and he voluntarily asked, if I had not some package to send to you.

I wish you to enjoy yourself in every possible way; but is there no danger of wounding the feelings of your good father, by being so openly intimate with the Wickliffe family? [3]

Mrs. Broome has not removed yet; but she thinks of doing so tomorrow. All the house---or rather, all with whom you were on decided good terms---send their love to you. The others say nothing.

Very soon after you went away, I got what I think a very pretty set of shirt-bosom studs---modest little ones, jet, set in gold, only costing 50 cents a piece, or 1.50 for the whole.

Suppose you do not prefix the ``Hon'' to the address on your lettersPage  466 to me any more. I like the letters very much, but I would rather they should not have that upon them. It is not necessary, as I suppose you have thought, to have them to come free.

And you are entirely free from head-ache? That is good---good---considering it is the first spring you have been free from it since we were acquainted. I am afraid you will get so well, and fat, and young, as to be wanting to marry again. Tell Louisa I want her to watch you a little for me. Get weighed, and write me how much you weigh.

I did not get rid of the impression of that foolish dream about dear Bobby till I got your letter written the same day. What did he and Eddy think of the little letters father sent them? Dont let the blessed fellows forget father.

A day or two ago Mr. Strong, here in Congress, said to me that Matilda would visit here within two or three weeks. [4] Suppose you write her a letter, and enclose it in one of mine; and if she comes I will deliver it to her, and if she does not, I will send it to her. Most affectionately A. LINCOLN


[1]   ALS, IHi

[2]   The child's effort to say ``capitol,'' is the only suggestion known to the editors (Beveridge, I, 438).

[3]   Robert S. Todd and Robert Wickliffe, who had married Mary Todd Russell, a cousin of Robert S. Todd, were bitter personal and political enemies, and were at this time becoming involved in a lawsuit which was to occupy Lincoln's attention after the death of his father-in-law in July, 1849 (William H. Townsend, Lincoln and His Wife's Home Town, p. 205 ff.).

[4]   William Strong, Democrat, of Pennsylvania, who married Matilda Edwards, daughter of Cyrus Edwards of Alton, Illinois.