Monday, September 5, 2016

Abraham Lincoln to Simon Cameron, January 13, 1861

(Private and confidential.)

Springfield, Illinois, January 13, 1861.
Hon. Simon Cameron.

My dear Sir: At the suggestion of Mr. Sanderson, and with hearty good-will besides, I herewith send you a letter dated January 3 — the same in date as the last you received from me. I thought best to give it that date, as it is in some sort to take the place of that letter. I learn, both by a letter from Mr. Swett and from Mr. Sanderson, that your feelings were wounded by the terms of my letter really of the 3d. I wrote that letter under great anxiety, and perhaps I was not so guarded in its terms as I should have been; but I beg you to be assured I intended no offense. My great object was to have you act quickly, if possible before the matter should be complicated with the Pennsylvania senatorial election. Destroy the offensive letter, or return it to me

I say to you now I have not doubted that you would perform the duties of a department ably and faithfully. Nor have I for a moment intended to ostracize your friends. If I should make a cabinet appointment for Pennsylvania before I reach Washington, I will not do so without consulting you, and giving all the weight to your views and wishes which I consistently can. This I have always intended.

Yours truly,
A. Lincoln.

SOURCE: John G. Nicolay & John Hay, Abraham Lincoln Complete Works, Volume 1, p. 665

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