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How Lincoln Piloted a Flat-Boat Over a Mill-Dam.

Governor Yates, of Illinois, in a speech at Springfield, quoted one of Mr. Lincoln's early friends-W. T. Greeneas having said that the first time he ever saw Mr. Lincoln, he was in the Sangamon River with his trousers rolled up five feet, more or less, trying to pilot a flat-boat over a milldam. The boat was so full of water that it was hard to manage. Lincoln got the prow over, and then, instead of waiting to bail the water out, bored a hole through the projecting part and let it run out; affording a forcible illustration of the ready ingenuity of the future President in the quick invention of moral expedients.

Splitting Rails and Studying Mathematics-Simmons, Lincoln &


In the year 1855 or '56, George B. Lincoln, Esq., of Brooklyn, was traveling through the West in connection with a large New York dry-goods establishment. He found himself one night in a town on the Illinois River, by the name of Naples. The only tavern of the place had evidently been constructed with reference to business on a small scale. Poor as the prospect seemed, Mr. Lincoln had no alternative but to put up at the place. The supperroom was also used as a lodging-room. After supper and a comfortable hour before the fire, Mr. L. told his host that he thought he would "go to bed." "Bed!" echoed the landlord; "there is no bed for you in this house, unless you sleep with that man yonder. He has the only one we have to spare." "Well," returned Mr. Lincoln, "the gentleman has possession, and perhaps would not like a bedfellow." Upon this, a grizzly head appeared out of the pillows, and said, "What is your name?" "They call



Located in Macon County, in the Sangamon Valley, about ten miles from Decatur. It was here, during the first year, that Abraham Lincoln and John Hanks split several thousand rails. Lincoln was about twenty years of age at this time.


"Lincoln !" re

of our Illinois

"I fear not."

me Lincoln at home," was the reply. peated the stranger; "any connection Abraham?" "No," replied Mr. L., 66 Well," said the old man, "I will let any man by the name of 'Lincoln' sleep with me, just for the sake of the name. You have heard of Abe?" he inquired. "Oh, yes, very often," replied Mr. Lincoln. "No man could travel far in this State without hearing of him, and I would be very glad to claim connection, if I could do so honestly." "Well," said the old gentleman, "my name is Simmons. Abe' and I used to live and work together when we were young men. Many a job of wood-cutting and rail-splitting have I done up with him. Abe Lincoln," said he, with emphasis, "was the likeliest boy in God's world. He would work all day as hard as any of us -and study by firelight in the log-house half the night; and in this way he made himself a thorough practical surveyor. Once, during those days, I was in the upper part of the State, and I met General Ewing, whom President Jackson had sent to the Northwest to make surveys. I told him about Abe Lincoln, what a student he was, and that I wanted he should give him a job. He looked over his memoranda, and, pulling out a paper, said: 'There is -county must be surveyed; if your friend can do the work properly, I shall be glad to have him undertake itthe compensation will be six hundred dollars!' Pleased as I could be, I hastened to Abe, after I got home, with an account of what I had secured for him. He was sitting before the fire in the log-cabin when I told him; and what do you think was his answer? When I finished, he looked up very quietly, and said, 'Mr. Simmons, I thank you very sincerely for your kindness, but I don't think I will undertake the job. In the name of wonder,' said I, why? Six hundred dollars does not grow upon every bush out

here in Illinois.' I know that,' said Abe, and I need the money bad enough, Simmons, as you know; but I have never been under obligation to a Democratic administration, and I never intend to be so long as I can get my living another way. General Ewing must find another man to do his work.””

Mr. Carpenter related this story to the President one day, and asked him if it was true. "Pollard Simmons !" said Lincoln: "well do I remember him. It is correct about our working togethe.; but the old man must have stretched the facts somewhat about the survey of the county. 1 think I should have been very glad of the job at that time, no matter what administration was in power.". Notwithstanding this, however, Mr. Carpenter was inclined to believe Mr. Simmons was not far out of the way and thought his statement seemed very characteristic of what Abraham Lincoln may be supposed to have been at twentythree or twenty-five years of age.

Captain Lincoln-How he Became Captain.

In the threatening aspect of affairs at the time of the Black Hawk War, Governor Reynolds issued a call for volunteers, and among the companies that immediately responded was one from Menard County, Illinois. Many of the volunteers were from New Salem and Clary's Grove, and Lincoli, being out of business, was the first to enlist. The company being full, they held a meeting at Richland for the clection of officers. Lincoln had won many hearts, and they told him that he must be their captain. It was an office that he did not aspire to, and one for which he felt that he had no special fitness; but he consented to be a candidate. There was but one other candidate for the office (a Mr. Kirkpatrick), and he was

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