621. James H. Matheny (William H. Herndon Interview).
Decr. 4th '90
I wish now to make an other statement. If you remember you once asked me if the text in Lamon's life of Lincoln was Correct — page 396, as I remember it, and in answer to which question I said "It was substantially Correct" & I say so now. Our Judge J. H. Matheny said to me, only a month or so before he died which was some two months since, that he heard Lincoln say in substance: "If Douglas can draw off such & such men from the cause of republicanism and be made to support him, who says he does not care wheteher slavery is vted up or voted down — if he can get strong & influential leading republican papers to laud him — & if he can attack and partly crush Buchanna's administration & can get in Illinois so many votes to Buchannans none, then he will play the devil at Charleston.
Library of Congress: Herndon-Weik Collection. Manuscript Division. Library of Congress. Washington, D.C. 3708
1. Refers to a passage in Lamon reporting a statement by AL, concluding: "A man that can bring such influence to bear with his own exertions may play the devil at Charleston" (396). Lamon's anonymous informant may well have been WHH himself.