335. Ninian W. Edwards (William H. Herndon Interview)
[1865 — 66]
Lincoln's Speech — Dick Taylor — N. W. Edwards
During his canvass for the Legislature in 1840 Col E. D. Taylor charged him Abe with belonging to the aristocracy. To which charge he replied that whilst Col. Taylor had his stores over the county, and was riding in a fine carriage, wore his kid cloves and had a gold headed cane, he was a poor boy hired on a flat boat at eight dollars a month, and had only one pair of breeches and they were of buckskin now said he if you know the nature of buckskin when wet and dried by the sun they would shrink and mine kept shrinking until they left for several inches my legs bare between the top of my Socks and the lower part of my breeches — and whilst I was growing taller they were becoming shorter: and so much tighter, that they left a blue streak around my leg which you can see to this day — If you call this aristocracy I plead guilty to the charge.
Library of Congress: Herndon-Weik Collection. Manuscript Division. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. 2370; Huntington Library: LN2408, 2:218 — 19