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  • Rediscovered manuscript from Abraham Lincoln's legal career sold at Bloomington's
  • Post author
    Paul Fraser

Rediscovered manuscript from Abraham Lincoln's legal career sold at Bloomington's

This last weekend, Bloomington Auction Gallery sold a document written by Abraham Lincoln - dating from before his Presidency. It was a reprieve for the manuscript, which almost didn't make it to anyone's collection

The piece is an 1846 Abraham Lincoln document relating to Tazewell Co. case Dusenberry vs. Bailey. The text is as follows:

"Dusenberry bought two lots from Bailey for $300. Dusenberry paid $200 and was prepared to pay the balance when Bailey died. Dusenberry sued Bailey's heirs to convey the two lots.

"The court appointed Lincoln as guardian ad litem. The court ruled that Dusenberry pay the balance to the estate and that a commissioner convey the land to Dusenberry." Signed Abraham Lincoln. Dated Sept. 1846.

Lincoln judicial letter
Lincoln judicial letter

This letter was actually written one month after Lincoln was elected U.S. Congressman (on August 3, 1846, Abraham Lincoln won the race for Congress in the Illinois Seventh District against Democrat Peter Cartwright).

The manuscript had been authenticated by the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library in Springfield, Illinois.

It was one of three documents obtained by a man from an estate sale. A well-judged investment? Well, not really, he was given them free in a box that the auctioneer wanted rid off. The lucky beneficiary (who has not been named) merely discovered them on opening the box.

The document sold at this auction brought $9,000 (that's an infinity per cent return). Bloomington Auction Galleries made its own discovery of a Lincoln document about to be thrown out in the mid-noughties which sold for $10,000.

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  • Post author
    Paul Fraser