James M. Davis to Abraham Lincoln, 29 March 18491Hillsboro March 29/49Hon A Lincoln
I wrote you some time ago that I had forwarded, by the hand of Col Bissell my recommendations to you with Request that you would have them placed, on file in the proper department, where they would be duly considered, I have heard nothing on the subject whether you Recd[Received] them or not.2 MrMcLaughlin[']s time is up in next Sept.[September] & the apointment will be made before the next session, of Congress it is therefore important to me & my friends that my Claims should be placed in such Condition as to be Considered Nothing new here, there will be [called?] sesion of the Legislature, perhaps in Nov–[November]3I am your friendJames M Davis4
<Page 2>HILLSBORO Ill.[Illinois]
FREEHon A LincolnWashington CityD.C–
1James M. Davis wrote this letter in its entirety, including the address on the second sheet, which was folded to make an envelope.
2Davis’ letter to Abraham Lincoln has not been located. Lincoln’s response, if he penned one, has not been located. Davis was seeking appointment as register of the U.S. General Land Office in Vandalia, Illinois.
3Davis references the special session of the Illinois General Assembly. Governor Augustus C. French would issue a proclamation on September 5 calling for a special session, which would open on October 22.
Illinois Journal (Springfield), 5 September 1849, 3:3; Illinois House Journal. 1849. 16th G. A., 2nd sess., 3.
4Davis was one of three candidates for the position of register at Vandalia. In a letter to Josiah B. Herrick in January 1849, Lincoln indicated that he had not pledged himself to any candidate, and was uncertain how to advise any of them.
Davis himself wrote Lincoln several other letters regarding his application, urging Lincoln to respond whether he had received the application materials and whether they had been forwarded to the proper department. In a letter from Davis dated April 9, 1849, Lincoln endorsed it by writing “Ansd before written.” Lincoln’s answer, however, has not been found. Lincoln did not respond to this and the other letters.
Davis received the appointment, serving as register from July 1849 until 1853.
James M. Davis to Abraham Lincoln; James M. Davis to Abraham Lincoln; James M. Davis to Abraham Lincoln; Register of all Officers and Agents, Civil, Military, and Naval, in the Service of the United States, on the Thirtieth September, 1849 (Washington, DC: Gideon, 1849), 135; Register of all Officers and Agents, Civil, Military, and Naval, in the Service of the United States, on the Thirtieth September, 1851 (Washington, DC: Gideon, 1851), 140; Register of Officers and Agents, Civil, Military, and Naval, in the Service of the United States, on the Thirtieth September, 1853 (Washington, DC: Robert Armstrong, 1853), 138; Illinois Journal (Springfield), 18 July 1849, 4:3.
Autograph Letter Signed, 2 page(s), Abraham Lincoln Papers, Library of Congress (Washington, DC).