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

[March 1887?]

Mrs Bell — continued

Mr. Lincoln Knew nothing much originally about Surveying. After he had surveyed a piece of land — getting Corners — distances — directions &c he would Call at our house and get my father to calculate the figures &c and get the number of acres — &c My father & Lincoln would sit till midnight Calculating, unless mother would drive them out to get wood for Cooking or for Sunday. Lincoln would say to mother — "Its too hard Mrs. Graham to disturb you so — but never mind, Mentor and myself will go out and get you wood." Father would hitch up the oxen and father and Lincoln would go out and soon return with great tree tops — the tops of trees — only the rail Cut, Cut Cut off at the Stump End, rails having been made out of the Stump End or the first Cut. When the wood was got in and Cut up then Lincoln & father would sit up till midnight or later calculating the figures &c. We lived about ˝ mile from New. Salem. Lincoln loved my mother and would frequently ask her for her advice on different questions — Such as love — prudence of movements &c — girls — &c. &c. Fanny Bails at Lincoln's request had a quilting in New. Salem. Ann Rutledge was there — Lincoln seemed to pay his attention to Miss Bails — did so to Nettle Ann — Ann flirted with Hill and paid Lincoln back in his own Coin — had a Kind of a air up — Settled on Anns death bed — in 1835 — 6 — I was only about 3 ys old, but heard people talk much

Library of Congress: Herndon-Weik Collection. Manuscript Division. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. 3926



1. In the top margin: Mentor Graham and Mrs Bell his daughter flighty — cranky.

2. The previous item, §498, is presumably the first part of the interview that was continued. It is possible that the "continued" indicates that WHH is here adding to his notes, after the fact, of an earlier interview.