328. Isaac Cogdal (William H. Herndon Interview).
[1865 — 6]
I Knew Abe Lincoln the first week he came to Salem in 1831 — June or July. He Kept Store for Offutt in Salem in 1831 & 2. — Saw Offutts goods opened — Lincoln boarded with Jas Rutledge at the time he was a Clk of Offutt. Rutledge lived in Salem — Kept tavern — small frame one story house made of Clap boards — fronting south and on the Main street — which East & west — but one Street in town — house had 4 rooms. The house was on the north side of the Main Street — fronting South
Cogdale went according to request & Sure Enough the Company dropt off one by one — his, Ls, Clerk included.
"I want to enquire about old times and old acquaintances" Said Lincoln. He then said — "When we lived in Salem there were the Greens, Potters Armstrongs — & Rutledges. These folks have got scattered all over the world — some are dead. Where are Rutledges — Greens — &c."
"After we had spoken over old times — persons — Circumstances — in which he showed wonderful memory I then dare to ask him this question —
May I now in turn ask you one question Lincoln Said Cogdale Most assuredly. I will answer your question if a fair one with all my heart. then it was that he answered — as follows
Abe is it true that you fell in love with & courted Ann Rutledge" Said Cogdale. Lincoln said, "it is true — true indeed I did. I have loved the name of Rutledge to this day. I have Kept my mind on their movements ever since & love them dearly" — said L
Abe — Is it true — Said Cogdale, that you ran a little wild about the matter:
I did really — I run off the track: it was my first. I loved the woman dearly & sacredly: she was a handsome girl — would have made a good loving wife — was natural & quite intellectual, though not highly Educated — I did honestly — & truly love the girl & think often — often of her now."
Bakers praire comes up — on the East side of the river just Even with Salem — a little north — The forest on the hill eastward joins Bakers prairie and is East & South of Salem —
Library of Congress: Herndon-Weik Collection. Manuscript Division. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. 3856 — 57; Huntington Library: LN2408 1:469 — 71