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match for the most of them, and they at once became his fast friends. On one occasion, Mr. Lincoln, with a number of other persons, was descending the Sangamon river in a flat-boat. The boat leaked badly and took in a good deal of water, and when they reached the Salem mill-dam, the water was not high enough to take the boat over with so much weight, and the bow ran up high and dry on the dam. The question was, What was to be done? Mr. Lincoln suggested that they should bore a hole in the bottom of the boat and lighten it by letting the water out. This was a novel idea, but the hole was bored in the bow, and all hands went to that end, which raised the. stern; the water flowed to the bow and passed off through the hole, and the boat went over the dam in safety.

On another occasion, when Mr. Lincoln and some of his friends were visiting a neighbor, a very large, fleshy, rough and uncouth old woman came in and seated herself on one of those old-fashioned, straight-backed, splitbottomed chairs, leaned back, balancing herself on the hind legs and rocking to and fro, and telling of everything going on in the neighborhood (for she knew everybody's business), Mr. Lincoln was sitting near, and being always fond of a joke, he couldn't withstand the temptation, and slyly put his foot under the front round of the chair and upset her. She fell in such a position that she could not extricate herself without his assistance; what followed can better be imagined than described.

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HAT Mr. Lincoln was an eminently good manthat he was really great in all the moral aspects of human character, is very widely if not universally conceded. That he was equally great from the purely intellectual point of view, has been spoken of with more reserve. It was not unnatural, therefore, that his extraordinary success in political life, obtained as it was without resort to the crafty methods of the mere politician, and without the usual personal solicitation by himself in his own behalf, should have been regarded by many as something of a mystery-especially when considered in connection with the fact that he was not supposed to be an educated His success was largely due, no doubt, to his remarkable sagacity in determining the condition of the public mind, and in reading the signs of the times. He seemed to have a special gift in this direction. Perhaps it was intuition, but so largely developed in his case as to be almost equivalent to a separate mental endowment, giving him, as it were, one faculty more than other men have, and bestowing upon him a corresponding advantage over his contemporaries. But that he was intellectually great, aside from this, is one of the most conspicuous facts of his life. And it is clearly evident from the circumstances in which he was placed, during the most important period of his political career-being a leader alike of a new party and a new thought-that he could not have succeeded nor laid a foundation for success, if this had not been a fact in his favor. Whatever he may



have lacked in the way of education or scholarship, he certainly did not lack knowledge, or the ability to acquire knowledge to any extent needed at any time when wanted, nor the intelligence and skill necessary to use it to the best possible advantage. There are thousands of educated men who would rejoice to have this same power, but have it not. Such talent as this, in the field of duty to which he was called, was an ample substitute for the scholarship he did not have, and out of this talent came. the giant forces which wrought his success. With these at his command, no difficulties embarrassed him, no emergencies found him unprepared, he made no mistakes, and met with no failures.

In the stirring Illinois campaign which brought him to the front as champion of freedom, and which resulted two years later in making him the nominee of his party for the Presidential office, he manifested capabilities equal to the highest and the best. The country was filled with able men at that time, men noted for great learning, eloquence, skill in debate, and wisdom of management, but it is not likely that any one could have been selected from among them all, who would have gone through that campaign, in his place, with a success and brilliancy equal to his. And yet the performance did not seem to be in any way difficult or extraordinary for him. It was only in keeping except as to its greater importance, and the greater excitement attending it-with all his former efforts in the political field. Without pretending to be an orator, he swayed the multitudes by his eloquence as the tempest stirs the sea; and vanquished his opponents in debate with the same easy grace and irresistible force of

logic with which lesser fields had been won, and which lesser foes had been taught to respect in the less trying situations of the past, and which all parties, friends and foes alike, were destined to admire. He wrought without malice; without personal animosity towards anybody; simply for his love of the right, and his hatred of the wrong, as matters of principle; and won the respect of all by the fairness and candor and good temper with which his work was done. With pleasant smiles, and keen wit, and unanswerable argument, he cleared the path before him, for himself and his party, and pointed the way to a higher and better life for the nation; and then, stepping quickly to the front, led the nation on to take possession of and permanently occupy that higher ground. And this was essentially his own work from beginning to end. He started it, and kept with it all the way through, as the most capable and efficient worker of all, and finally finished it at the end. A nobler exhibition of mental supremacy and magnificent success, in the political field, has not been seen on this earth. This is a strong statement, but it is no doubt a perfectly truthful one. If there are men now living who would withhold from him this large credit for intellectual greatness, let them explain how, from the condition of helpless poverty in which he was born, and in which he continued through all the years of childhood and youth, he could come to be the master-spirit of the nation, and to hold its highest position of official trust and power with such transcendent ability and faultless wisdom, through the most trying ordeal any nation or any ruler of a nation has ever experienced; and do all this without aid from any outside source except such as he



created for himself and drew unto himself by his own efforts alone, as he advanced. His known integrity and goodness of heart were, of course, strong elements of рорularity, but such success as this cannot be rationally accounted for without including among its causes that most indispensable one of all-great intellectual ability. If we call it wisdom, it means the same thing.

Mr. Lincoln was a profound admirer of our great men of the past. He studied their lives and made himself minutely acquainted with their characters, and became one of the noblest defenders of their work. Particularly

is this true with regard to the men of the Revolution. He had imbibed their very spirit. The Declaration of Independence was the light which lighted him on his political way. He believed in it as sincerely and devoutly as he believed in his Bible. Its principles to him were as sacred as any earthly thing could be. He regarded them as of divine origin. And now, when he found that noble instrument assailed by gifted northern orators, and sneered at and ridiculed as containing nothing but "glittering generalities," and determined efforts being made to destroy its influence over the public mind, in order to make more room for slavery, he was naturally roused with indignation and inspired with eloquence in its defense. He came to its defense with a magnanimity and power no other man has shown. It would not be difficult to prove, if there were time and space, that he really possessed many of the leading characteristics of our great men of the past, more, perhaps, than has been manifested by any other single American. At the same time, he was wholly unlike them all in his intellectual methods-as

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