Petition of Abraham Lincoln and Others to Eliza Browning, [11 December 1839]1
To the Honorable Mrs O. H. Browning
We the undersigned, respectfully represent to your Honoress, that we are in great need of your society in this town [of] Springfield; and therefore humbly pray [that] your Honoress will repair, forthwith to the Seat of Government, bringing in your train all ladies in general, who may be at [your ]command; and all Mr Browning's sisters in particular—2And as faithful & dutiful Petitioners we promise unto your Honoress that if you grant this our request, we will render unto your Honoress due attention and faithful obedience to your orders in general & to Miss Browning[]s3 in particular
In tender consideration whereof we pray your Honoress, to grant your humble petitioners such their above request, and such other and further relief in the premises as to your Honoress may seem right and proper. And your petitioners as in duty bound will ever pray &c[etc].
A. LincolnE. B. WebbJ J HardinJohn Dawson

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[ endorsement ]
12/11/1839Dear Madam
As the humble but [honored] instrument, selected to forward to your Honoress the forgoing memorial of our grievances & petition for redress, I present therewith my most hearty congratulations at the prospects of your returning health, of your ability to undergo another seige at the seat of Government— The fact is madam, that in your absence business will not progress with its accustomed facility— and now when both yourself & my distinguished lady are away, they cannot even begin operations— There is no doubt if you were here, there would be extensive improvements in the ar important business, of visiting conversation & amusement—
In consideration of our distressed situation Mr Butler has promised to give you up his parlor, but if
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if there is any difficulty [on] that point I promise as a gallant Knight to give you the privilege of hanging up on a peg in [my] closet, whenever it may [suit] [your] convenience—
I have been [visiting] the ladies this evening, they [say] it will be quite gay this winter— Several ladies from a distance [are] here with the intention of spending [the] winter—Mrs H will be here next [week]— The members are very much [scattered] in location, but we have quite a pleasant society in this House—
Many others besides your humble petitioners are inquiring for your Honoress & are anxiously awaiting your arrival. His Excellency will be considered, when you arrive, as the minor part of the Quincy repr Delegation— We trust therefore to have your Honoress here by the 25th inst, as large a living Christmas present as large as life, & twice as natural & three times as agreable—
With sentiments of the most profound [respect] and esteem I subscribe myself y'r m't ob't[your most obedient], & very humble [serv't[servant]].
J J Hardin
[ endorsement ]
EndorsedA. LincolnE BWebb

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DEC[December] 12
Mrs O H BrownigQuincyIlls
1Abraham Lincoln wrote the address and part of the body of the letter and signed his name. He also signed his name on an endorsement stretching across page three.
2The manuscript is in Lincoln’s hand to this point; the remainder appears to be written by John J. Hardin.
3Miss Browning could not be positively identified.

Autograph Document Signed, 4 page(s), Rosenbach Museum and Library (Philadelphia, PA).