Mrs. Abraham Lincoln - A Study of Her Personality and Her Influence on Lincoln
Mrs. L h ranam o mcom A STUDY OF HER PERSONALITY AND HER INFLUENCE ON LINCOLN W. A. ELVANS M. S., M. D. NEW YORK ALFRED A-KNOPF MCMXXXII Copyright 1932 by Alfred A. Knopf y Inc. All rights reserved no part of this book may be reprinted in any form without permission in writing from the publisher First Edition Manufactured in the United States of America Mrs. Lincoln in her wedding dress. Preface WHEN ONE UNDERTAKES A STUDY OF THE LIFE OF A public man or woman, one can expect to find some thing of a printed record. If the study is based on the sub jects connection with high lights of history, the sources of information are easily accessible. Nor is there a dearth of material when one delves somewhat more into the private life of a person who is very much under public observation. Free access to a few good libraries generally suffices to make available as much material as can be used. But when one undertakes a study of a wife and mother who lived over fifty years ago, even though her husband was President of the United States, the task is not so easy. If the undertaking includes an investigation of her behavior private as well as public the difficulties are greater. To attempt to ex plain that behavior in the light of more modern views of personality adds to the difficulties. There are many Abraham Lincoln collectors and a large Lincoln literature, but there are no Mrs. Lincoln collectors, and no collection of Mrs. Lincoln literature. It is true that much has been written about the wife of the first president to be assassinated, but it is not assembled. The material must be sought for in many places. It is a pleasure for me to acknowledge the help I have had, and to express myappreciation thereof and gratitude therefor to Mrs. J. O. Wynn, my sister, who visited Lexington, Ken tucky, three times and there interviewed Mrs. Emilie Todd Helm, her three children, and others relatives of Mrs. Lincoln and descendants of friends of her family. Mrs. Wynn read the files of the Lexington papers from 1817 to 1 840 and other documents in the Lexington Public Library PREFACE and in the library of Transylvania College. She read the Draper Collection in the State Historical Society of Wis consin, and the Durrett Collection in the University of Chicago. Mrs. I. D. Rawlings, wife of my long-time associate in the Chicago and the Illinois Departments of Health, who read the files of the Springfield papers, and other documents and books, in the Illinois State Historical Society, Spring field. The following libraries for access to their Lincoln mate rial and newspaper files given either to me personally or to someone helping with the investigation those of the Chi cago Tribune, the Chicago Historical Society, and the Il linois State Historical Society, the Newberry Library, the library of the University of Chicago, the Chicago Public Library, the library of the State Historical Society of Wis consin, that of Transylvania College, the Lexington Public Library, the John Hay Library of Brown University, the Congressional Library, the New York Public Library, the Huntington Library, the library of the Union League Club of Chicago, and that of the Lincoln Historical Research Foundation to the librarians and their assistants for in telligent guidance and help, especially Mildred Burke, of the Chicago Tribune Library, Mrs. Harriet Taylor, of the Newberry Library, and Mrs. Charles F.Norton, of Tran sylvania College Library. Dr. B. J. Cigrand, of Batavia, Illinois, who undertook to find what medical record the Bellevue Place Sanatorium had of Mrs. Lincoln. When he found that the sanatorium had not saved any of Dr. R. J. Pattersons notes or the history sheets of Mrs. Lincolns mental illness, Dr. Cigrand put at my disposal his collection of newspaper references to Mrs. Lincoln, consisting principally of items appearing in the Fox River Valley papers, and those of Chicago in 1875. Oliver R...
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