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498. Elizabeth Herndon Bell (William H. Herndon Interview).

[March 1887]

Lizzie Herndon Bell

I am the daughter of Mentor Graham — am 55 years old — Born near New Salem 1833 — Knew Mr Lincoln well — he was frequently at my fathers house — lived about ˝ mile from New Salem — . Fanny Bails had a quilting at the request of Lincoln in New Salem — Ann Rutlidge was there — An Rutledge I think had her Eye on Hill — more than on Lincoln — don't think that Ann Rutledge was absolutely Engaged to Lincoln though She sent for him during the last sickness — At the quilting Fanny Bailes had her eye on Lincoln and Lincoln had his Eye on Ann — To make Ann a little more attentive to Lincoln he L seemed to go for Miss Bails — . Miss B stuck a neadle in her finger — Lincoln pulled it out. Lincoln quilted on the quilt a line or two The quilt is wore out. Lincolns acts nettled Ann to a kind of jeolesy. Ann paid him back in his own Coin — Lincoln would ask my mother if he should marry this or that woman. Lincoln & Ann had a fly up, but on her deathbed she sent for Lincon & all things were reconciled. McNamar returned before the death of Ann — McNamar would not marry Ann because she flirted with Lincoln — I was simple a child in 1835 — 6 and don't Know much of my own knowledge only heard people talk

Library of Congress: Herndon-Weik Collection. Manuscript Division. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. 3842



1. WHH marginal note: Daughter of Mentor Graham, both father & daughter — cranky — flighty — at times nearly non copus mentis — but good & honest.

2. Even though her age should place this interview in 1888, the year of her death, it seems more likely that it belongs to the cluster of Petersburg interviews WHH did in March 1887.