Tag Archives: Illinois

Lincoln receiving vault undergoing restoration

Oak Ridge Cemetery is repairing the receiving vault that housed the remains of Abraham Lincoln and his son Willie before their relocation to the Lincoln Tomb.  The restoration should be completed in time for the 150th anniversary commemoration of Lincoln’s burial, which will also include

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Lincoln’s handwriting confirmed in nineteenth-century book on racism

Experts have confirmed that handwriting in an Illinois library’s copy of Types of Mankind is that of the Great Emancipator.  The book is a lengthy justification of racism based on the notion that different races constitute separate species.

Lincoln made a notation inside the book with the name and place of residence of its owner, a fellow attorney named Clifton Moore, from whom he probably borrowed it to study his opposition’s arguments in preparation for a legal case or political debate.

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Digging up a Lincoln courthouse

An excavation in Bloomington, IL has uncovered traces of a courthouse where Lincoln practiced.  Archaeologists are digging at the site before construction begins on a project for the McLean County Museum of History.

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From the legal circuit to the White House

In a newspaper piece appearing online today, Guy Fraker explains how Lincoln’s practice on the Eighth Judicial Circuit in Illinois helped propel him to the presidency.  Fraker is the author of a book on the same subject.

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“He has proven himself a most remarkable man”

In late 1863 a newspaper in Lincoln’s home state of Illinois endorsed him as a candidate for re-election, stating, “Mr. Lincoln has done well – much better than any man in the country could have done under the circumstances. He has proven himself a most remarkable man, who sincerely desires the peace and happiness of the people.”  The paper just republished this endorsement from 150 years ago; you can read the entire article by clicking here.

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Historic courthouse on Lincoln’s circuit gets helping hand from kids

As an Illinois lawyer, Abraham Lincoln spent quite a bit of time on the Eighth Judicial Circuit.  One of the courthouses where he practiced was a small Greek Revival building in the town of Mount Pulaski; it’s become a state historic site, but has fallen on hard times.  A local third-grade class has started a fundraising effort to contribute to the building’s upkeep, and donations have been coming in from as far away as Germany.

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An inauspicious start

This month marks the 180th anniversary of Lincoln’s first political defeat.  In 1832, at the age of twenty-three, he kicked off his career in politics with a run for the Illinois legislature.  The election took place on August 6th.  Out of thirteen candidates, Lincoln placed eighth.  Only the top four (Edmund D. Taylor, Lincoln’s future senior law partner John T. Stuart, Achilles Morris, and Peter Cartwright) went to the legislature.

The young upstart failed to win office, but he was making a local name for himself; Lincoln received 277 out of 300 votes cast in his own precinct of New Salem.  Two years later, he ran again, this time successfully.

The Lincoln-Berry Store at New Salem, IL. By Amos Oliver Doyle, via Wikimedia Commons

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