Summary of Speeches at Whig Barbecue at Jacksonville, Illinois, 6 October 18431
At this stage of the meeting Gen. Hardin introduced a set of Resolutions indicating the principles of the Whig party, which were unanimously adopted. Mr Lincoln of Sangamon, was then called on. He made a most excellent speech, which occupied the time till nearly dark, when the meeting adjourned until candlelight.
After Mr Baker sat down, Mr Lincoln was again called upon. He took up the three prominent principles of the whig party—The Tariff, a sound and uniform National Currency, and the Distribution of the proceeds of the Public Lands. All these he illustrated so plainly and so forcibly, as to show that he not only understood these principles thoroughly himself and their beneficial bearing on the American people, but that he also possessed a most happy faculty of vindicating them and [of urging]2 their adoption before an audience [in such a] manner as to convince all [present of their]. . . and necessity.
. . .3
1A report of this meeting was prepared by and published in the Burlington, Iowa newspaper “Hawk-Eye.” The first excerpt is from the fifth paragraph in the source text. The second excerpt is from the ninth paragraph.
Morgan County Whigs hosted the barbecue as the payment for Sangamon County in giving the largest Whig majority for John J. Hardin at the Congressional election in August 1843. In the winter of 1842-43, Abraham Lincoln sought nomination to run as a Whig for the congressional seat in the Seventh District. Edward D. Baker, however, got the endorsement of the Sangamon County Whigs. At the district convention in May, John J. Hardin would defeat Baker for the nomination.
Lincoln proposed the idea of a barbecue on May 11, 1843. In a letter to Hardin written on the same day, Lincoln stated that he “got up the proposal,” likely in an effort to galvanize Whig voters who would have preferred the nomination of Baker.
Abraham Lincoln to John J. Hardin; Abraham Lincoln to Joshua F. Speed; Abraham Lincoln to Martin S. Morris; Proceedings of Whig Convention at Pekin, Illinois regarding Candidates for Congress; Illinois Register (Springfield), 17 March 1843, 1:6; 24 March 1843, 2:4; Sangamo Journal (Springfield, IL), 6 April 1843, 2:4; Michael Burlingame, Abraham Lincoln: A Life (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2008), 1:215-18.
2The original source text is torn. The supplied text comes from the transcription in The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln.
Roy P. Basler, ed., The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln (New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 1953), 1:330.
Copy of Printed Document, 1 page(s), Abraham Lincoln Association Files, Lincoln Collection, Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum (Springfield, IL).