On the next page we print a complete list of the Lincoln documents and memorabilia on which the series of Lincoln articles, now concluded, was based. That series was begun and is finished in the Atlantic in good faith. Certain terms and statements contained in it have been challenged by Lincoln experts. To every such criticism we have been keenly alive. We have felt that judgment upon the series as a whole should be suspended until it could be read in its entirety. Feeling also that the challenges and criticisms it has called forth should likewise be considered in their entirety, we shall await the comment on the current installment, and in a future issue of the magazine will deal completely with the whole matter. Once the Atlantic decided to publish the articles, we thought it necessary to act on two principles: first, that the entire series should be printed, together with all the principal documents on which it was based; second, that all facts of important bearing on the case which came to our notice, no matter how adverse, would be welcomed.
Lest any inference from this discussion seem to reflect upon the owner of this material, it is just to say that Miss Minor has testified to her own good faith through a contract which ensures her return of real value only in case the book is accepted by the public as an important addition to the Lincoln story.
It should hardly be necessary to state that under no circumstances would we have begun the publication of the articles unless we had believed in the genuineness of the original documents. We have striven from the outset, not to prove a theory, but to reach the truth.
For the judgment of Mr. Oliver R. Barrett and Mr. Worthington C. Ford, who have expressed themselves on the subject with great definiteness, we have the regard which we owe to serious and responsible scholars. It is perhaps interesting to mention the attitude of Paul M. Angle, secretary of the Lincoln Centennial Association, who has been conspicuous among the critics of the Minor material. He is the author of a Special Bulletin published with great promptness by his society, which has been given wide publicity in the press. It seems pertinent to quote from a printed statement of Mr. Angle's, to which insufficient attention has been called:—
'I was going at it [the Minor material] in a leisurely way, intending simply to write the editor a letter. But Monday noon Alvin Barrett came in the office. He insisted that I give the story to the press. That's what I had wanted to do, knowing that it would be great advertising for me, and good publicity for the Lincoln Memorial Association. Mr. Hay [president of the Lincoln Memorial Association] had been against it, but Barrett converted him.
Monday afternoon I gave what I had to the local papers and the Associated Press. The local papers played it big, the Journal running it on the first page with a two-inch head. It went out of Springfield, but some Associated Press man in Chicago killed it, afraid of a libel suit. Nevertheless we did get it out East. A friend of Mr. Hay owns the Philadelphia Record. He called him and I wired 1200 words which the Record printed in a big story.
'Since then I've been fortifying and elaborating my proof. I worked Thanksgiving night until 2 A.M. The other papers, afraid at first, are now hot after the story. The New York Times is going to print it to-morrow; the Chicago Daily News and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch to-night. It's the biggest thing that ever happened to me. One doesn't get a chance very often to put the magazine of the country in the frying pan and cook it brown.'
It seems fair that Mr. Angle should have the advertising which means so much to him.
LINCOLN ORIGINALS IN THE MINOR COLLECTION
Books and Keepsakes
Copy of the English version of the Polyglott Bible, dated 1831, bearing Lincoln signature and annotations
Copy of A Practical System of Rhetoric, dated 1829, with Lincoln signature and annotations
Copy of An Essay on Elocution, dated 1838, with Lincoln signature and annotations
Title-page of Elements of Geometry, bearing Lincoln signature
Piece of Ann Rutledge's coverlet
Piece of lace made by Ann Rutledge
Ornamental pin of silver wire given by Lincoln to Ann Rutledge
Ann Rutledge to Lincoln, beginning: 'Pleas do not cum to-nite'
Ann Rutledge to Lincoln, beginning: 'I am t ... ask me to and'
Lincoln to Ann Rutledge, beginning: 'It greatly pains me to hear'
Lincoln to Ann Rutledge, beginning: 'I am filled with regret'
Lincoln to Ann Rutledge, beginning: 'Nancy has been telling me'
Ann Rutledge to Matilda Cameron, beginning: 'I just cannot help teling you about
Ann Rutledge to Matilda Cameron, beginning: 'Dear Mat — I must rite you this . . . grand hapning'
Lincoln to John Calhoun, beginning: 'If you have in your possession or can'
Lincoln to John Calhoun, beginning: 'Dear Old Friend. Yours of May 6th received.'
Lincoln to John Calhoun, beginning: 'Dear John. Yours . . . I regret you feel so'
Lincoln to John Calhoun, beginning: 'You old rascal — I am not risen to such heights'
Lincoln to Sally Calhoun, beginning: 'In perusing your recent letter I am impressed
Lincoln to F. W. Hirth, beginning: 'Esteemed Friend — Your letter has claimed my'
Lincoln to Jed Weatherby, beginning: 'You old rascal! What fate or sudden decision'
Milinde Whipple to Matilda Cameron, beginning: 'Well we got heer at las it was auful'
Sally Calhoun to Elizabeth Hirth, beginning: 'Yours of May 2nd at hand. would hav answered'
Tow. Anderson to Gibson Holt, beginning: 'Dear Gippy — Yours to hand, wel you old,' and note added by Gibson Holt
Letters Concerning Transmittal of Collection
Elizabeth Hirth to her brother Fred, beginning: 'As I mail this letter I am expressing you a package of keepsakes'
Sally Calhoun to Elizabeth Hirth, beginning: 'I have sad news to write you. last week'
Margaret Morrison to her brother-in-law and sister, beginning: 'Bro. Norman has gone up to Hartford'
Original Diaries and Memoranda
'A Tribute to My Mother,' by Lincoln
Diary of Sarah Calhoun, dated June 2, 1848. Pages I-VIII
Matilda Cameron's diary — 10 entries, 1833-1836
Memorandum from Ann Rutledge to Lincoln, accompanying the gift of the Polyglot Bible
Sketch map of New Salem, 13 by 9 1/4 inches, drawn in retrospect and signed by John Calhoun in 1858
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.