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1 A newspaper correspondent who had been sent down from Chicago to “write up” Mr. Lincoln soon after his nomination, was kind enough several years ago to furnish me with an account of his visit. As some of his reminiscences are more or less interesting, I take the liberty of inserting a portion of his letter. “A what — not in the corner of the room,” he relates, “was laden with various kinds of shells. Taking one in my hand, I said, ‘This, I suppose, is called a Trocus by the geologist or naturalist.’ Mr. Lincoln paused a moment as if reflecting and then replied, ‘I do not know, for I never studied either geology or natural history.’ I then took to examining the few pictures that hung on the walls, and was paying more than ordinary attention to one that hung above the sofa. He was immediately at my left and pointing to it said, ‘That picture gives a very fair representation of my homely face.’ . . . The time for my departure nearing, I made the usual apologies and started to go. ‘You cannot get out of the town before a quarter past eleven,’ remonstrated Mr. Lincoln, ‘and you may as well stay a little longer.’ Under pretence of some unfinished matters down town, however, I very reluctantly withdrew from the mansion. ‘Well,’ said Mr. Lincoln, as we passed into the hall, suppose you come over to the State House before you start for Chicago. ‘ After a moment's deliberation I promised to do so. Mr. Lincoln, following without his hat, and continuing the conversation, shook hands across the gate, saying, ’ Now, come over. ‘ I wended my way to my hotel, and after a brief period was in his office at the State House. Resuming conversation, he said, ’ If the man comes with the key before you go, I want to give you a book. ‘ I certainly hoped the man would come with the key. Some conversation had taken place at the house on which his book treated,--but I had forgotten this,--and soon Mr. Lincoln absented himself for perhaps two minutes and returned with a copy of the debates between himself and Judge Douglas. He placed the book on his knee, as he sat back on two legs of his chair, and wrote on the fly-leaf, ’ J. S. Bliss, from A. Lincoln. ‘ Besides this he marked a complete paragraph near the middle of the book. While sitting in the position described little Willie, his son, came in and begged his father for twenty-five cents. ’ My son, ‘ said the father, ’ what do you want with twenty-five cents? ‘I want it to buy candy with,’ cried the boy. ‘I cannot give you twenty-five cents, my son, but will give you five cents,’ at the same time putting his thumb and finger into his vest pocket and taking therefrom five cents in silver, which he placed upon the desk before the boy. But this did not reach Willie's expectations: he scorned the pile, and turning away clambered down-stairs and through the spacious halls of the Capitol, leaving behind him his five cents and a distinct reverberation of sound. Mr. Lincoln turned to me and said, ‘He will be back after that in a few minutes.’ ‘Why do you think so?’ said I. ‘Because, as soon as he finds I will give him no more he will come and get it.’ After the matter had been nearly forgotten and conversation had turned in an entirely different channel, Willie came cautiously in behind my chair and that of his father, picked up the specie, and went away without saying a word.” --J. S. Bliss, letter, Jan. 29, 1867, Ms.
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