Petition of Hiram Watson and Others to the Sangamon County Commissioners' Court, [11] March 18311
The Honl[Honorable] the County Commissioners Court of Sangamon County at the March term for 1831.2
We the undersign’d petitioners would represent to your Honl body, that whereas it represented to us that there is a vacancy in the office of constable in the Springfield district, and whereas the Statute in such cases made and provided, authorises your Honl Court to fill such vacancy upon petition.3
We therefore request you to fill sd[said] vacancy with some suitable person4
Hiram Watson 1
James Watson 2
Jacob Donner 3
John [Kern?] 4
Benjamin Howard 5
Horatio Crowder 6
Joseph Graham 7
William B Rice 8
Thomas Willian 9
Abram Crowder 10
Wm Dillard 11
Samuel Millage 12
Josep Brady 13
John Brady 14
15 John H Robertson 15
16 Charles Allsbury 16
17 James Mason 17
18 Ben. F. Dillard 18
19 Gunnell S Mc Kinnie 19
20 Andrew Mc Kinnie 20
21 John J. Darden 21
22 Robert Jack 22
23 Charles P. Cabaness 23
24 A Lincoln 24
25 John Hanks 25
26 John D Johnston 26
27 Moses Duncan 27
Daniel Clark 28
Thomas foster 29

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Petition for constable to fill Smith Vacancy
1Hiram Watson authored the petition. Abraham Lincoln signed his own name as well as those of John Hanks and John D. Johnston.
At their March 1831 term, the Sangamon County Commissioners’ Court received a petition signed by 304 citizens of the Springfield district, of which this petition was a part, requesting the court to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Adam Smith. Smith may have resigned because he had been found guilty of assault and battery on Absalom Burnett and fined $4. Although the General Assembly had changed the procedure in 1827, the Sangamon County Commissioners’ Court, satisfied that “a majority of the voters of this district” had signed the petition, granted the request and appointed William Constant as constable.
Minutes, 8, 11 March 1831, Sangamon County Commissioners’ Court Record Book C, 162, 191, Illinois Regional Archives Depository, University of Illinois Springfield, Springfield, IL.
2Zachariah Peter, Josiah B. Smith, and Garret Elkin composed the Sangamon County Commissioners’ Court in 1831.
History of Sangamon County, Illinois (Chicago: Inter-State, 1881), 50.
3Beginning in 1827, Illinois law required the clerk of the county commissioners’ court to order judges of election in the appropriate district to hold an election for constable within twenty days to fill the vacancy.
“An Act to Provide for the Election of Justices of the Peace and Constables,” 30 December 1826, Revised Laws of Illinois (1827), 255-59.
4This last sentence was written in a different handwriting from the preceding text.

Autograph Document Signed, 2 page(s), Lincoln Collection, Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum (Springfield, IL).