Thomas Ewing to Abraham Lincoln, 22 June 18491D of I. W. June 22 1849.Dear Sir
As you request in your note of this morning I herewith. I herewith enclose the papers on file relating to your Application for Commr[Commissioner] of the Genl Land Office numbered from 75 to 183. inclusive, with small package filed at a late hour on yesterday2I am &c.[etc]T EwingHon A LincolnWashington City
2Abraham Lincoln wrote Ewing the same day as this letter, requesting all letters of recommendation in support of his candidacy for commissioner of the U.S. General Land Office that the U.S. Department of the Interior had in its possession. Originally, only Justin H. Butterfield, James L. D. Morrison, and Cyrus Edwards were vying to become commissioner. Lincoln entered the competition after learning that Butterfield was favored over Morrison and Edwards. Supporters of each candidate sent letters of reference and recommendation to both President Zachary Taylor and Secretary of the Interior Ewing. Although the Department of the Interior oversaw the U.S. General Land Office, President Taylor was ultimately responsible for appointing the commissioner of the U.S. General Land Office.
Lincoln and Ewing were able to correspond quickly at the time of this letter because Lincoln was in Washington, DC. As competition for the job intensified, William H. Henderson and Josiah Lucas, Lincoln supporters living in Washington, DC, had urged Lincoln to come to the nation’s capital to personally lobby for the position. Lincoln arrived on or before June 19. Ewing and Lincoln corresponded several more times on the topic of letters of recommendation Ewing and the Department of the Interior received concerning Lincoln’s candidacy for commissioner. Ultimately, neither Morrison, Edwards, nor Lincoln received the appointment; the job went to Butterfield instead. See the General Land Office Affair.
William H. Henderson to Abraham Lincoln; William H. Henderson to Abraham Lincoln; Josiah M. Lucas to Abraham Lincoln; The Lincoln Log: A Daily Chronology of the Life of Abraham Lincoln, 10 June 1849, http://www.thelincolnlog.org/Results.aspx?type=CalendarDay&day=1849-06-10; 19 June 1849, http://www.thelincolnlog.org/Results.aspx?type=CalendarDay&day=1849-06-19; Abraham Lincoln to Thomas Ewing; Thomas Ewing to Abraham Lincoln; Abraham Lincoln to Thomas Ewing.
Handwritten Transcription, 1 page(s), University of Notre Dame Archives (South Bend, Indiana).