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Petition of Philo H. Thompson and Others to Abraham Lincoln, 1 May 1849
(Copy)
We the undersigned citizens of Pekin and other parts of Tazewell County, understanding that our late Representative in Congress Hon. A. Lincoln, has recommended ^the appointment of^ our Townsman Turner R. King, to fill one of the Land Offices at Springfield ^and that certain persons^, sixty miles from here, are charging said King, with being an Abolitionist, a Drunkard and a Gambler, with a view of defeating his appointment, do pronounce said charges one and all to be false– That Mr King may sometimes drink spirits, or throw a Card for amusement is probably true, but that he is either a Drunkard or Gambler in any true sense, we utterly deny. We add that in our opinion, his appointment would be a proper one, and th[at] we sincerely hope it may be made
L. H. Wilkey P. H. Thompson
Edward Jones James Wilson
R. F. Flint
Seth Kinsman Wm Wilkey
John T. Perkins A. J. Hallowell

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O. F. Ernest B. Stanbury
F. H. Leonard H. W. Terrill
John Gridley N. Castor
Isaac Leonard Preston Graft
John W. Casey J. H. Riblett
Benj. Kellogg Jr Isaac A. McBean
Saml McBean
David Strong J. P. Henderson
David Mack Saml Rhoads
D. T. Kenyon N. C. Nason
C. A. Benton Jacob Broadwell
J. Waggonseller John [S?]
Frederic Bloom David Hanger
P. Weyhrich John Mcormick
J. M. Gill W. S. Maus
Wm Snyder Ralph Hosy
J. Henry Ball F. P. Wright
Saml King B. Worley
Timothy D. Vincent Marion Loyd
Chas W. Morris William Devore
John Weick J. Penniman
Saml B. Morris Stephen Robinson
Thos C. Reeves Geo. W. Doolittle
Conrod Clausen Abram Haas
William Robinson John Haas
Saml Rob Morrison Wm P. Hunt
E. C. Jones–
Geo. W. Goodheart Lewis E. McKinzie
Saml Reeves T. J. S. Flint
J. P. Hall M. C. Young
J. B. Doolittle Barnard Bailey
Warren Payne David Tinney
T. M. Tippin W. C. Quigley
J. F. Haines John F. Wybay

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W. A. Tinney J. L. Paine
[?] Ward Jacob Rhoades
Saml Morris Charles Rush
Abraham Woolston E. A. Radford
Rahill Sanders
Saml R. Baker John McMillen
D. J. P. Thompson Levi Cohenour
Henry Cromwell David M. Bailey
Geo. Snyder David M. Bailey
Wm Waggoner Jno. Smith
G. J. D. Rupert Dewill C. Frazer
M. D. [Young?]
Saml G. Porter D. C. Osburn
John Davison Apollo Cone
C. [Schluenpf?] Alexander H. Kellogg
C. Turner Wm B. McLuce
H. Tea C. Herr[enoner?]
Thos N. Gill Robert McClintick
Benj. Buck Henry Keefer
Wm Howard J. D. Maybergh
Lemuel Allen Joseph Dickson
James A. McGrew John M. Grogan
William Stephens Jno. Atkinson
William McGinnis James Atkinson
J. Eugene Leonard Joseph Bowers
B. S. Heyers Agustus Rise
Peter G. Aylor Alfred G. Nye
R. H. Snell James Haines
B. S. Prettyman
Abram H. Lee J. A. Hawley
W. B. Doolittle William Kragan
B. Sloain
Wm P. Chain
A. Seiwell
David Young
Christopher Kinsey

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[docketing]
Copy of T. R. King's Certificate1
1Philo H. Thompson enclosed this copy in a letter to Abraham Lincoln dated May 3, 1849. Lincoln enclosed the original petition in a letter to Secretary of the Interior Thomas Ewing. The original petition is not extant.
This petition and Thompson’s letter represented the culmination of sorts of an extended controversy over Turner R. King’s appointment--a controversy in which Lincoln became embroiled. In December 1848, Thompson wrote Lincoln urging him to help King get a job at the General Land Office in Springfield. From December 1848 to February 1849, Lincoln received several letters urging him to help King secure a position. On April 7, 1849, Lincoln wrote a letter to Secretary Ewing recommending King for the job of register. On April 13, he wrote another letter reversing himself, recommending King for the job of receiver.
On April 25, Lincoln wrote Thompson that a “tirade” has erupted over his support for King. Whigs in Springfield were upset that Lincoln had endorsed King for a plum patronage job instead of someone from Sangamon County. Hoping to scuttle King’s appointment, opponents cast aspersions on King’s moral rectitude. Lincoln bemoaned that his influence in Washington had broken down and that King’s prospects for a job had diminished. Lincoln urged Thompson to find out the truth about King, and, if the charges proved false, to take measures to sustain his endorsement of King. In the meantime, Lincoln wrote Secretary Ewing attempting to head off any charges against King or his other recommendations for jobs in the Department of the Interior.
Acting on Lincoln’s request, Thompson crafted a petition denying the allegations leveled against King and secured the signatures of prominent Whigs and Democrats in Tazewell County. Between April 30 and May 7, Samuel R. Baker, Edward Jones, John W. Casey, and David Mark wrote Lincoln attesting to King’s moral character and his fitness for public office. Lincoln penned another letter to Ewing on May 10, again recommending King for the job of register. Lincoln enclosed these letters, Thompson’s letter, and the signed petition in his letter to Ewing, urging Ewing to pay particular attention to the petition. In late May, King received the appointment as register and held the job until 1853.
William B. Doolittle to Abraham Lincoln; Robert W. Briggs to Abraham Lincoln; Richard T. Gill to Abraham Lincoln; Samuel R. Baker to Abraham Lincoln; Edward Jones to Abraham Lincoln; John W. Casey to Abraham Lincoln; David Mark to Abraham Lincoln; David Mark to Abraham Lincoln; Niles’ National Register (Philadelphia, PA), 23 May 1849, 1:2; 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.

Handwritten Transcription, 4 page(s), Abraham Lincoln Papers, Library of Congress (Washington, DC).