Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln. Volume 3.
Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865.

Contract with Theodore Canisius [1]

May [30?] 1859

This instrument witnesseth that the Printing-press, german types &c. purchased of John Burkhardt, [2] belong to Abraham Lincoln; that Theodore Canissius is to have immediate possession of them, and is to commence publishing in Springfield, Illinois, a Republican newspaper, to be chiefly in the german language, with occasional translations into English at his option; the first number to issue in the ensuing month of June, and to continue thenceforward issuing weekly or oftener, at the option of said Cannissius, he, said Cannissius, bearing all expences, and charges, and taking all incomes and profits; said paper, in political sentiment, not to depart from the Philadelphia and Illinois Republican platforms; and for a material departure in that respect, or a failure of said paper to issue as often as weekly, or any attempt to remove said press, types &c, from Springfield, or to print with them any thing opposed to, or designed to injure the Republican party, said Lincoln may, at his option, at once take possession of said press, types &c, and deal with them as his own. On the contrary, if said Canissius shall issue a newspaper, in all things conformable hereto, until after the Presidential election of 1860, then said press, types &c are to be his property absolutely, not, however, to be used against the Republican party; nor to be removed from Springfield without the consent of said Lincoln. A. LINCOLN


May 30. 1859. Jacob Bunn, bought the press, types &c. of John Burkhardt, for me, and with my money A. LINCOLN


[1]   ADS, RPB. Copy at IHi

[2]   Probably John M. Burkhardt, an early German settler who became a prominent merchant at Springfield.