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Selected Letters by Abraham Lincoln

The source of this small sample is The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln, edited by Roy P. Basler and others. Introductions to individual letters are by Abraham Lincoln Online. Documents housed on other Web sites are noted as such.

Letter to Allen N. Ford, 1846
Lincoln replies to charges of being a religious scoffer.

Letter to George Robertson, 1855
Important quotes on liberty and an early mention of the "house divided" concept.

Letter to Joshua Speed, 1855
Lincoln tells a close friend how he views slavery.

Advice to Lawyers, 1855-1860
A sampling of several letters Lincoln wrote to prospective lawyers.

Letter to Henry Pierce, 1859
Lincoln's highly quotable "all honor to Jefferson" letter.

Letter to Lyman Trumbull, 1860
Lincoln confesses his interest in the 1860 presidential nomination.

Letter to George Latham, 1860
Lincoln encourages a friend of his son's who failed to enter college.

Letter to Grace Bedell, 1860
A response to the girl who asked Lincoln to grow a beard.

Letter to the Ellsworths, 1861
A letter of condolence to the parents of a 24-year-old colonel.

Letter to Horace Greeley, 1862
The famous "I would save the Union" response to a newspaper editor.

Letter to Fanny McCullough, 1862
Eloquent expression of condolence to the daughter of an Illinois friend.

Letter to Major General Joseph Hooker, 1863
Advice with a fatherly tone to a Union general.

Letter to Erastus Corning and Others, 1863
An important public letter defending Lincoln's civil liberties policies.

Letter to General Grant, 1863
Lincoln admits that he was wrong about a strategy.

Letter to James C. Conkling, 1863
What Lincoln asked a friend to read at a Union rally in his hometown.

Letter to Edward Everett, 1863
Lincoln responds to compliments about his remarks at Gettysburg.

Letter to Albert G. Hodges, 1864
Reveals Lincoln's position on constitutional responsibility and emancipation.

Letter to Mrs. Eliza P. Gurney, 1864
Lincoln thanks a Quaker woman for her prayers and concern.

Letter to Mrs. Bixby, 1864
The much-praised message to a widow who lost sons in the war.

Lincoln's Acceptance of Honorary Degree, 1864 (Princeton University)
Lincoln responds to a degree awarded to him by Princeton.

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