LINCOLN, Abraham (1809-1865). Autograph letter signed “Lincoln & Herndon”. To Messrs. S. C. Davis & Co. Springfield, 30 November 1858.
1 page, 4to, 214 x 196 mm, creased, a few small stains. Written during his final and most famous legal partnership with William Herndon, Lincoln advises Samuel C. Davis & Co. regarding foreclosures and property the company had been awarded in a case handled by their firm. “Gentlemen / Yours of the 27th returning letter of Mr. Fishback is just received. What amount will have to be paid Mr. Fishback, we can not tell until we hear further from him - We await your direction about making sales - The first Monday of January will be the 3rd day - so that judgment can be obtained at the January Term if process be served as early as the 24th of Dec - being ten days - If suit be commenced as early as the 15th the Marshal will have from that till the 24th to find the parties, and serve the process - reasonable time, but not quite so safe as if it were a little greater. Yours &c / Lincoln & Herndon.” The young Arkansas lawyer (and later Governor of Arkansas), William Meade Fishback handled foreclosure proceedings for Lincoln & Herndon, and is referenced in the opening of this letter. In 1857, Fishback moved to Springfield, Illinois, where he was admitted to the bar and briefly practiced law. Poor health prompted him to move to Sebastian County, Arkansas in 1858. In 1861, Fishback was elected to the Arkansas Secession Convention as a pro-Union delegate. Fishback was elected Governor of Arkansas in 1892. William Henry Herndon (1818-1891) was born in Kentucky and moved to Springfield with his family in 1823. Herndon worked as a store clerk before studying law in the Logan and Lincoln partnership. Admitted to the bar in 1844, Lincoln later that year chose him as his junior partner. The partnership of Lincoln and Herndon lasted until Lincoln’s death in 1865, and handled at least 3,200 cases in the county courts of central Illinois, the Illinois Supreme Court, and the federal courts in Illinois. Provenance: Emanuel Hertz (his sale, Anderson Galleries, 15 Nov 1927, lot 324).
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