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Letter to Truman Smith


(Private and confidential.)
SPRINGFIELD, ILLINOIS, November 10, 1860.

My dear Sir: This is intended as a strictly private letter to you, and not as an answer to


yours brought me by Mr. It is with the most profound appreciation of your motive, and highest respect for your judgment, too, that I feel constrained, for the present at least, to make no declaration for the public.

First. I could say nothing which I have not already said, and which is in print, and open for the inspection of all. To press a repetition of this upon those who have listened, is useless; to press it upon those who have refused to listen, and still refuse, would be wanting in self-respect, and would have an appearance of sycophancy and timidity which would excite the contempt of good men and encourage bad ones to clamor the more loudly.

I am not insensible to any commercial or financial depression that may exist, but nothing is to be gained by fawning around the "respectable scoundrels" who got it up. Let them go to work and repair the mischief of their own making, and then perhaps they will be less greedy to do the like again.

Yours truly,