Bloomington Pantagraph, September 3, 1858. These speeches have been heretofore misdated September 8, 1858 (NH, III, 349-56). Tradition has come to attribute to the Clinton speeches one of Lincoln's most famous utterances---``You can fool all the people some of the time and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.'' In 1905 testimony was gathered by the Chicago Tribune and Brooklyn Eagle to prove that Lincoln used the epigram at Clinton. The testimony was conflicting and dubious in some particulars, but the epigram has remained a favorite in popular usage. Neither the report in the Pantagraph which provides the text of the Clinton speeches, nor any other contemporary Lincoln reference located by the present editors, makes any reference to the epigram.
[ return to text ]