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22. William G. Greene to William H. Herndon

June 11th 1865

Friend Herandon

Yours of 5th inst recd. contents noted &c Those Notes of Surveys are date respectively one the 16th & the other the 17th of November A.D. 1836 (I presume that that job was a bout the last of His surveying as he soon after went to Vandalia to take his seat in the Legislature & never permanantly Domiciled in this


Co. afterwards) If that ould Lady who you write lives "some 9 or 10. miles North West of your city who says Lincoln mad a Crop for her Husband some time in 1831 —32 or —33" was not a woman I would say she Lied like Hell he never croped for or with any one in Sangamon Co. In reply to Interogitary No 3 Capt Lincoln Co Rendivoused at Beardston remained there 3 or 4 days then moved in a North Westerly direction & Camped the 1st night at or near Rushville remained there 2 or 3 days untill all the Troops were fully organised the Colum struck the Missippie River at or near the Yellow-Banks General Sam Whiteside Comd the Volenteers General Gains & Gen. Adkinson were in comd. of the Regulars presume Gains was the senior

Capt Lincolns Co. was discharged at the mouth of Fox River on the West or North west bank of the Ills River Lincoln reenlisted as a private and pursued the Indians untill they conqerd or drove them west of the Miss. River My impression now is that his entire Coe. save & except our Noble Captain returned when we were mustered out at Now Otoway

The Whiskey Barrell story so help me god is true as Revelation & the statements made to Thayer are in the main True except I did not cry I was not Noble enough or sensative sufficient. Though Lincoln's Lecture that Night after he & I were & a lone I now have no doubt was the nearest the Sublime that I shall ever heare I judge from the fact that what little success has smiled on me was from resolves secretly made to myself from his Lecture on the best or wisest course for wayward or penniless boys &c

The Rosting-Ear Story is a humbug and I would pay no regard to it the whole world knows Lincoln was a small feader.

I now think I shall be up next week & will Call & see you. your friend.

W G. Greene

Library of Congress: Herndon-Weik Collection. Manuscript Division. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. 2159 — 60; Huntington Library: LN2408, 1:479 — 80



1. The same story was collected for Josiah G. Holland by Erastus Wright. See Holland, 40.

2. This refers to an incident related in William M. Thayer, The Pioneer Boy, and How He Became President (Boston, 1863), 249 — 53. To help Greene win a bet, AL lifts and drinks out of a whiskey barrel, spits out the whiskey, and then lectures Greene on the evils of betting. In an interview with G. A. Pierce published in the Chicago Weekly Inter Ocean, May 5, 1881, Green identied the loser of the bet as a man named Eastep. Clippings in the Nicolay and Hay Collection, ISHL.