385. Stephen Whitehurst (statement for William H. Herndon)
[1865 — 66]
W.H.H. Here is that thing — the truth as near as I can tell it.
That Mr L was not above the feelings of other men and subject to the same anxieties and emotions is instanced by his great desire to have the respect of his friends and neighbors — and to see tokens of their confidence and esteem. He was very anxious, when a candidate for the Presidency the first time, that he might receive a majority of the votes of his own County and more particularly in the city of Springfield, and was much as the friends of Mr. Douglass' men working in every way to keep their majority in the city and County, & of which they were confident Mr L. sent for one of the candidates for a County office on the Republican Ticket and the messenger failing to deliver his message went himself and inquired of the candidate what measures, if any, had been adopted to get out the full republican vote; and upon being told that every honorable effort had been made in the country precincts to have a full vote cast, and that the Republicans would probably wait until a few days before the election before any systematic effort would be made in the city, seemed very much dissatisfied, and was very energetic in his actions and Language, condemning such a course. He was requested to make any suggestions that might occur to him, with the assurance that the candidates and the Committees would make every effort in their power to carry out any plan he might offer. — He then detailed to the candidate his plan for procuring a full vote and securing to the Republican ticket such electors as were careless or doubtful. The suggestions were carried out and the result fully justified his expectations; and a majority of the votes of his own city were given him despite the efforts of his political opponents, and the Democratic majority in the County reduced to a few votes.
Probably no such political contest ever took place before in our county as
This contest on both sides was very warm and thorough
Library of Congress: Herndon-Weik Collection. Manuscript Division. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. 3996; Huntington Library: LN2408, 2:163 — 64