Abraham Lincoln to Samuel D. Marshall, 14 July 18421Springfield, July 14. 1842—Friend Sam:
Yours of the 15th June, relative to the suit of Grable vs Margrave was duly received, and I have delayed answering it till now, when I can announce the result of the case—2 The judgement is affirmed— So soon as the clerk has liesure to make out a copy ^of ^ the mandate of the court, I will get him to do so, and send it to you, by force of which, your clerk will issue an execution—
As to the fee, if you are agreed, let it be as follows— Give me credit for two years subscription to your paper, and send me five dollars in good money or the equivalent of it in our Illinois paper—3
There is nothing new here— Bennett’s Mormon disclosiers are making some little stir here, but not very great—4Ever your friendA. Lincoln
<Page 2>SPRINGFIELD IL
JU[L][July] 15S. D. Marshall Esqr[Esquire]ShawneetownIllinois
1Abraham Lincoln wrote and signed the letter. He also authored the address on the back page. The paper was folded to create an envelope.
2Marshall’s June 15 letter to Lincoln has not been located.
Margrave v. Grable was tried in the Gallatin County Circuit Court, which found for Margrave. Grable then appealed the decision to the Illinois Supreme Court. Marshall represented Margrave during the circuit court trial; Lincoln represented Margrave in the appeal. The Supreme Court delivered its opinion on July 14. For details of the case, see Daniel W. Stowell et al., eds., The Papers of Abraham Lincoln: Legal Documents and Cases (Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2008), 1:239-50; and Grable v. Margrave, Martha L. Benner and Cullom Davis et al., eds., The Law Practice of Abraham Lincoln: Complete Documentary Edition, 2d edition (Springfield: Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, 2009), http://lawpracticeofabrahamlincoln.org/Details.aspx?case=136016.
3During this time, banks issued their own paper currency. The notes tended to vary in value, responding to economic and political conditions. Both of Illinois’ state banks became insolvent in 1842: the State Bank failed in February and the Bank of Illinois in June. The paper currency produced by each bank had depreciated considerably by the time of this letter.
Charles Hunter Garnett, State Banks of Issue in Illinois (Champaign: University of Illinois, 1898), 38, 40-41.
4Dr. John C. Bennett, an excommunicated Mormon, published several letters in the Sangamo Journal from July to September 1842, detailing accusations against Joseph Smith and the Mormon religion. The Journal titled the first of these letters “Mormon Disclosures.”
Daniel W. Stowell et al., eds., The Papers of Abraham Lincoln: Complete Documentary Edition, 1:249-50, n40; Sangamo Journal (Springfield, IL), 8 July 1842, 2:4-6; 15 July 1842, 2:2-7; 22 July 1842, 2:4-5; 19 August 1842, 2:6-7; 2 September 1842, 2:7.
Autograph Letter Signed, 2 page(s), Lincoln Collection, Chicago Historical Society (Chicago, IL)