This shows the whole field, on the basis of the election of 1856.

Whether, since then, any Buchanan, or Fremonters, have shifted ground, and how the majority of new votes will go, you can judge better than I.

Of course you, on the ground, can better determine your line of tactics than any one off the ground; but it behooves you to be wide awake and actively working.

Don't neglect it; and write me at your first leisure. Yours as ever,

A. LINCOLN.

TO JOHN MATHERS, JACKSONVILLE, ILL.

SPRINGFIELD, JULY 20, 1858.

JNO. MATHERS, Esq.

MY DEAR SIR:--Your kind and interesting letter of the 19th was duly received. Your suggestions as to placing one's self on the offensive rather than the defensive are certainly correct. That is a point which I shall not disregard. I spoke here on Saturday night. The speech, not very well reported, appears in the State journal of this morning. You doubtless will see it; and I hope that you will perceive in it that I am already improving. I would mail you a copy now, but have not one [at] hand. I thank you for your letter and shall be pleased to hear from you again.

Yours very truly,

A. LINCOLN.

TO JOSEPH GILLESPIE.

SPRINGFIELD, JULY 25, 1858.

HON. J. GILLESPIE.

MY DEAR SIR:--Your doleful letter of the 8th was received on my return from Chicago last night. I do hope you are worse scared than hurt, though you ought to know best. We must not lose the district. We must make a job of it, and save it. Lay hold of the proper agencies, and secure all the Americans you can, at once. I do hope, on closer inspection, you will find they are not half gone. Make a little test. Run down one of the poll-books of the Edwardsville precinct, and take the first hundred known American names. Then quietly ascertain how many of them are actually going for Douglas. I think you will find less than fifty. But even if you find fifty, make sure of the other fifty, that is, make sure of all you can, at all events. We will set other agencies to work which shall compensate for the loss of a good many Americans. Don't fail to check the stampede at once. Trumbull, I think, will be with you before long.

There is much he cannot do, and some he can. I have reason to hope there will be other help of an appropriate kind. Write me again.

Yours as ever,

A. LINCOLN.

TO B. C. COOK.

SPRINGFIELD, Aug. 2, 1858.

Hon. B. C. COOK.

MY DEAR SIR:--I have a letter from a very true and intelligent man insisting that there is a plan on foot in La Salle and Bureau to run Douglas Republicans for Congress and for the Legislature in those counties, if they can only get the encouragement of our folks nominating pretty extreme abolitionists.

It is thought they will do nothing if our folks nominate men who are not very obnoxious to the charge of abolitionism. Please have your eye upon this. Signs are looking pretty fair.

Yours very truly,

A. LINCOLN.

TO HON. J. M. PALMER.

SPRINGFIELD, Aug. 5, 1858.

HON. J. M. PALMER.

DEAR SIR:--Since we parted last evening no new thought has occurred to [me] on the subject of which we talked most yesterday.

I have concluded, however, to speak at your town on Tuesday, August 31st, and have promised to have it so appear in the papers of to-morrow. Judge Trumbull has not yet reached here.

Yours as ever,

A. LINCOLN.

TO ALEXANDER SYMPSON.

SPRINGFIELD, Aug. 11, 1858.

ALEXANDER SYMPSON, Esq.

DEAR SIR:--Yours of the 6th received. If life and health continue I shall pretty likely be at Augusta on the 25th.

Things look reasonably well. Will tell you more fully when I see you.

Yours truly,

A. LINCOLN.

TO J. O. CUNNINGHAM.

OTTAWA, August 22, 1858.

J. O. CUNNINGHAM, Esq.

MY DEAR SIR:--Yours of the 18th, signed as secretary of the Republican club, is received. In the matter of making speeches I am a good deal pressed by invitations from almost all quarters, and while I hope to be at Urbana some time during the canvass, I cannot yet say when.

Abraham Lincoln
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