The soldier has gone to rest, and now, crippled, blinded, and broken, his widow comes to you and to me, gentlemen of the jury, to right her wrongs.
She was not always thus.
She was once a beautiful young woman.
Her step was as elastic, her face as fair, and her voice as sweet as any that rang in the mountains of old Virginia
But now she is poor and defenceless.
Out here on the prairies of Illinois
, many hundreds of miles away from the scenes of her childhood, she appeals to us, who enjoy the privileges achieved for us by the patriots of the Revolution, for our sympathetic aid and manly protection.
All I ask is, shall we befriend her?”
The speech made the desired impression on the jury.
Half of them were in tears, while the defendant sat in the court room, drawn up and writhing under the fire of Lincoln
's fierce invective.
The jury returned a verdict in our favor for every cent we demanded.
was so much interested in the old lady that he became her surety for costs, paid her way home, and her hotel bill while she was in Springfield
When the judgment was paid we remitted the proceeds to her and made no charge for our services.
's notes for the argument were unique: “No contract.--Not professional services.--Unreasonable charge.--Money retained by Deft not given by Pl'ff.--Revolutionary War.--Describe Valley Forge privations.--Ice-Soldier's bleeding feet.--Pl'ffs husband.--Soldier leaving home for army.--Skin Deft
It must not be inferred from this that Lincoln
was in the habit of slopping over.