opportunities in early life, Mr. Lincoln
grew into the great man he was. The foundation for his education was laid in Indiana
and in the little town of New Salem
, and in both places he gave evidence of a nature and characteristics that distinguished him from every associate and surrounding he had. He was not peculiar or eccentric, and yet a shrewd observer would have seen that he was decidedly unique and original.
Although imbued with a marked dislike for manual labor, it cannot be truthfully said of him that he was indolent.
From a mental standpoint he was one of the most energetic young men of his day. He dwelt altogether in the land of thought.
His deep meditation and abstraction easily induced the belief among his horny — handed companions that he was lazy.
In fact, a neighbor, John Romine
, makes that charge.
“He worked for me,” testifies the latter, “but was always reading and thinking.
I used to get mad at him for it. I say he was awful lazy.
He would laugh and talk — crack his jokes and tell stories all the time; didn't love work half as much as his pay. He said to me one day that his father taught him to work; but he never taught him to love it.”
Verily there was but one Abraham Lincoln
His chief delight during the day, if unmolested, was to lie down under the shade of some inviting tree to read and study.
At night, lying on his stomach in front of the open fireplace, with a piece of charcoal he would ciphler on a broad, wooden shovel.
When the latter was covered over on both sides he would take his father's drawing knife or