149. Abner Y. Ellis to William H. Herndon.
Moro, Illinois 14th Feb 1866
I will endeavor to answer the questions proposed by you as well as I can
1st. I do not remember the year that, Messrs Lincoln & Thomas had their — set-to — on the Steps of the old Court room in Hoffmans Row
I remember I was selling goods in then in a room 2nd door north of Melvins Corner
2nd he borrowed those plays of Me while I was PM prehaps in 185 the Novel he Must of read before he came to Springfield
3nd Mr L had this conversasion with Judge Wm A Denning in Condells store in the Year 1845 (concerning secret societys)
4th it was in 1834 I think he wore the Blue Janes Claw hammer & Swallow tail Coat — You Must Certinally Know something about the old fashion Dress Coat some of them are worn at the present time by Gentlemen Who are Not hard on Coats —
5th it was in the Year 1841 the told me that he had been reading — Volney & Tom Pain but when he had read them I do not know the reason I remember the time it was at My House and he Wrote a Deed for me and I have it Now before Me
6th Mr L never said any thing in My presents that I remember about which Side of his family he inherited his Ways, Looks or thought he dose Not look like the Hanks family they are Sandy Complection Red Hair & Freckel all but John Hanks I think & have allways thought he sound Judgment was from his Mothers side of the House
7th I never heard him say any thing about this old stock in Virgina & Kentucky
A. Y. Ellis.
I remember the time that Lincoln & E D Baker run in Convention to deside Who Should run for Congress in old Sangamon destrict — that Some of Bakers freinds accused Mr Lincoln of belonging to a proud and an eresticratic family Meaning the Edwds & Todds I suppose and when it came to Mr Lincolns ears — he laughed Verry hartially and remarked — Well that sounds strange to me for said he I do not remember of but one that ever came to See Me and While he Was in town he Was accused of Stealing a Jews Harp
Josh Spead remembers his saying this I think you ought to remember this Beverly Powell & Myself live with Bell & Speed and I think he said so in ther store — after that a Miss Hanks Came to spend the winter with Mrs. Lincoln I Never saw her that I remember
Library of Congress: Herndon-Weik Collection. Manuscript Division. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. 2489 — 91; Huntington Library: LN2408, 1:416 — 18