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542. William M. Dickson to Jesse W. Weik.

Cincinnati, Ohio, Apl 17 1888

Dear Sir,

Your letter of 13th inst rec'd — What I Know in reference to your inquiry may be found in a letter of mine published in the Cin: Com'l of date April 17, 1876. The substance of this letter I again published in Harper's Monthly Mag. of date June 1884, or 1885 or 1886 — I forget wh. Under this heading — "Abraham Lincoln at Cincinnati." or words to that effect, the fuller statement is in the Com'l — I have not time now to repeat the incidents. I was not in the case; but Mr Lincoln staid at my house during the trial — He had been of council — original — in the case in Ill. To suit the Convenience of Judge McLean the argument of the Case had been adjourned to Cin, the judge residing here. Mr Lincoln expected to make his law argument in this case & had a pride to measure swords with Reverdy Johnson, Counsel for McCormick, Mr Harding was associated with Mr Lincoln & was Expected to make the mechanical argument. To Mr L's surprise on reeching here he found that Mr Stanton had been brought into the case; also R. M. Corwin — when the time came for assignment of duty between the lawyers — Mr C. moved that only 2 counsel shd argue the Case — wh. was carried — when Mr Stanton said "then Mr L — you will make the law argument — " no said Mr L. — you make it. Very well said Stanton — This is the statement given me at my house by Mr L. on the day when it occurred. Mr L. felt that he had been "tricked" out of the case & the transaction deeply affected him. He said McLean was not friendly to him & he felt he had been shabbily treated all round — But never heard nor do I believe Stanton used unseemly language towards Mr L.

Sincerely Yours
W. M. Dickson

Library of Congress: Herndon-Weik Collection. Manuscript Division. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. 4629 — 30



1. "Abraham Lincoln at Cincinnati," Harper's New Monthly Magazine 69 (June 1884): 62 — 66.

2. Reverdy Johnson (1796 — 1876), an eminent constitutional lawyer and former U.S. attorney general; Edwin M. Stanton (1814 — 69), a prominent attorney from Pittsburgh who served as AL's secretary of war; Richard M. Corwine, a Cincinnati attorney and later a political correspondent of AL.