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bill, or permit it to become a law without this evidence of their disapprobation; and they now protest against the re-organization of the judiciary: Because
"1st. It violates the great principles of free government by subjecting the judiciary to the Legislature.
"2d. It is a fatal blow at the independence of the judges and the constitutional term of their offices.
"3d. It is a measure not asked for, or wished for, by the people.
"4th. It will greatly increase the expense of our courts, or else greatly diminish their utility.
"5th. It will give our courts a political and partisan character, thereby impairing public confidence in their decisions. "6th. It will impair our standing with other States and the world.
"7th. It is a party measure for party purposes, from which no practical good to the people can possibly arise, but which may be the source of immeasurable evils.
"The undersigned are well aware that this protest will be altogether unavailing with the majority of this body. The blow has already fallen; and we are compelled to stand by, the mournful spectators of the ruin it will cause.”
Mr. Lincoln was elected in 1840, to serve, of course, until the next election in August, 1842; but for reasons of a private nature, to be explained hereafter, he did not appear during the session of 1841-2.
In concluding this chapter, taking leave of New Salem, Vandalia, and the Legislature, we cannot forbear another quotation from Mr. Wilson, Lincoln's colleague from Sangamon, to whom we are already so largely in debt:
"In 1838 many of the Long Nines were candidates for re-election to the Legislature. A question of the division of the county was one of the local issues. Mr. Lincoln and myself, among others, residing in the portion of the county sought to be organized into a new county, and opposing the division, it became necessary that I should make a special canvass through the north-west part of the county, then known as
Sand Ridge. I made the canvass; Mr. Lincoln accompanied me; and, being personally well acquainted with every one, we called at nearly every house. At that time it was the universal custom to keep some whiskey in the house, for private use and to treat friends. The subject was always mentioned as a matter of etiquette, but with the remark to Mr. Lincoln, 'You never drink, but maybe your friend would like to take a little.' I never saw Mr. Lincoln drink. He often told me he never drank; had no desire for drink, nor the companionship of drinking men. Candidates never treated anybody in those times unless they wanted to do so.
"Mr. Lincoln remained in New Salem until the spring of 1837, when he went to Springfield, and went into the lawoffice of John T. Stuart as a partner in the practice of law, and boarded with William Butler.
'During his stay in New Salem he had no property other than what was necessary to do his business, until after he stopped in Springfield. He was not avaricious to accumulate property, neither was he a spendthrift. He was almost
always during those times hard up. He never owned land.
"The first trip he made around the circuit after he commenced the practice of law, I had a horse, saddle, and bridle, and he had none. I let him have mine. I think he must have been careless, as the saddle skinned the horse's back. "While he lived in New Salem he visited me often. He would stay a day or two at a time: we generally spent the time at the stores in Athens. He was very fond of company: telling or hearing stories told was a source of great amusement to him. He was not in the habit of reading much,— never read novels. Whittling pine boards and shingles, talking and laughing, constituted the entertainment of the days and evenings.
"In a conversation with him about that time, he told me, that, although he appeared to enjoy life rapturously, still he was the victim of terrible melancholy. He sought company, and indulged in fun and hilarity without restraint, or stint as to time; but when by himself, he told me that he was so
overcome by mental depression that he never dared carry a knife in his pocket; and as long as I was intimately acquainted with him, previous to his commencement of the practice of the law, he never carried a pocket-knife. Still he was not misanthropic : he was kind and tender-hearted in his treatment to others.
"In the summer of 1837 the citizens of Athens and vicinity gave the delegation then called the Long Nine' a public dinner, at which Mr. Lincoln and all the others were present. He was called out by the toast, Abraham Lincoln, one of Nature's noblemen.' I have often thought, that, if any man was entitled to that compliment, it was he."
NDER the Act of Assembly, due in great part to Mr. Lincoln's exertions, the removal of the archives and other public property of the State from Vandalia to Springfield began on the fourth day of July, 1839, and was speedily completed. At the time of the passage of the Act, in the winter of 1836-7, Mr. Lincoln determined to follow the capital, and establish his own residence at Springfield. The resolution was natural and necessary; for he had been studying law in all his intervals of leisure, and wanted a wider field than the justice's court at New Salem to begin the practice. Henceforth Mr. Lincoln might serve in the Legislature, attend to his private business, and live snugly at home. In addition to the State courts, the Circuit and District Courts of the United States sat here. The eminent John McLean of Ohio was the justice of the Supreme Court who sat in this circuit, with Judge Pope of the District Court, from 1839 to 1849, and after that with Judge Drummond. The first terms of these courts, and the first session of the Legislature at Springfield, were held in December, 1839. The Senate sat in onė church, and the House in another.
Mr. Lincoln got his license as an attorney early in 1837, "and commenced practice regularly as a lawyer in the town of Springfield in March" of that year. His first case was that of Hawthorne vs. Wooldridge, dismissed at the cost of the plaintiff, for whom Mr. Lincoln's name was entered. There were then on the list of attorneys at the Springfield bar many names of subsequent renown. Judge Stephen T.
Logan was on the bench of the Circuit Court under the Act of 1835. Stephen A. Douglas had made his appearance as the public prosecutor at the March term of 1836; and at the same term E. D. Baker had been admitted to practice. Among the rest were John T. Stuart, Cyrus Walker, S. H. Treat, Jesse B. Thomas, George Forquer, Dan Stone, Ninian W. Edwards, John J. Hardin, Schuyler Strong, A. T. Bledsoe, and Josiah Lamborn.
By this time Mr. Lincoln enjoyed considerable local fame as a politician, but none, of course, as a lawyer. He therefore needed a partner, and got one in the person of John T. Stuart, an able and distinguished Whig, who had relieved his poverty years before by the timely loan of books with which to study law, and who had from the first promoted his political fortunes with zeal as disinterested as it was effective. The connection promised well for Mr. Lincoln, and no doubt did well during the short period of its existence. The courtroom was in Hoffman's Row; and the office of Stuart & Lincoln was in the second story above the court-room. It was a "little room," and generally a dirty one." It contained “a small dirty bed," -on which Lincoln lounged and slept, — a buffalo-robe, a chair, and a bench. Here the junior partner, when disengaged from the cares of politics and the Legislature, was to be found pretty much all the time, “reading, abstracted and gloomy." Springfield was a small village, containing between one and two thousand inhabitants. There were no pavements: the street-crossings were made of "chunks," stones, and sticks. Lincoln boarded with Hon. William Butler, a gentleman who possessed in an eminent degree that mysterious power which guides the deliberations of party conventions and legislative bodies to a foregone conclusion. Lincoln was very poor, worth nothing, and in debt, circumstances which are not often alleged in behalf of the modern legislator; but "Bill Butler" was his friend, and took him in with little reference to board-bills and the settlement of accounts. According to Dr. Jayne, he “fed and clothed him for years ;" and this signal service, rendered