beckoned him on in the darkest hour of his adversity.
Someone, probably a Democrat who voted for him in the preceding fall, recommended him to John Calhoun
, then surveyor of the county, as suitable material for an assistant.
This office, in view of the prevailing speculation in lands and town lots, was the most important and possibly the most profitable in the county.
, the incumbent, was a Yankee and a typical gentleman.
He was brave, intellectual, self-possessed, and cultivated.
He had been educated for the law, but never practiced much after coming to Illinois
--taught school in preference.
As an instructor he was the popular one of his day and age. I attended the school he taught when I was a boy, in Springfield
, and was in later years clerk of the city under his administration as Mayor
, I know, respected and admired him. After Lincoln
's removal to Springfield
they frequently held joint debates on political questions.
At one time I remember they discussed the tariff question in the court house, using up the better part of two evenings in the contest.
was polite, affable, and an honest debater, never dodging any question.
This made him a formidable antagonist in argumentative controversy.
I have heard Lincoln
say that Calhoun
gave him more trouble in his debates than Douglas
ever did, because he was more captivating in his manner and a more learned man than Douglas
But to resume.
The recommendation of Lincoln
's friends was sufficient to induce Calhoun
to appoint him one of his deputies.
At the time he