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[51] chapter of the “Chronicles” which reflected on the Grigsbys so severely, and which must serve as a sample of all the others.1

Reuben and Charles Grigsby on the same day married2 Betsy Ray and Matilda Hawkins respectively. The day following they with their brides returned to the Grigsby mansion, where the father, Reuben Grigsby, senior, gave them a cordial welcome. Here an old-fashioned infare, with feasting and dancing, and the still older fashion of putting the bridal party to bed, took place. When the invitations to these festivities were issued Abe was left out, and the slight led him to furnish an appreciative circle in Gentryville with what he was pleased to term “The first Chronicles of Reuben.” 3

1 April 16, 1829. Records Spencer Co., Indiana.

2 The original chapter in Lincoln's handwriting came to light in a singular manner after having been hidden or lost for years. Shortly before my trip to Indiana in 1865 a carpenter in Gentryville was rebuilding a house belonging to one of the Grigsbys. While so engaged his son and assistant had climbed through the ceiling to the inner side of the roof to tear away some of the timbers, and there found, tucked away under the end of a rafter, a bundle of yellow and dust-covered papers. Carefully withdrawing them from their hiding-place he opened and was slowly deciphering them, when his father, struck by the boy's silence, and hearing no evidence of work, enquired of him what he was doing. “Reading a portion of the Scriptures that hav'n't been revealed yet,” was the response. He had found the “Chronicles of Reuben.”

3 Lincoln had shrewdly persuaded some one who was on the inside at the infare to slip upstairs while the feasting was at its height and change the beds, which Mamma Grigsby had carefully arranged in advance. The transposition of beds produced a comedy of errors which gave Lincoln as much satisfaction and joy as the Grigsby household embarrassment and chagrin.

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