Hampton P. Sloan to Abraham Lincoln, 10 August 18581
Hon Abram LincolnDear Sir
I received your reply to our invitation, to address our County Agricultural Society, in September next At a meeting of our executive board held in Rockford on Saturday 7th inst, I presented your letter, and the board thought there was encouragement Sufficient, to authorize me to correspond with you again, and see if you could not give us a positive promise to address us on that occasion
In looking over the list of appointments for Mr Doughlas and yourself I find none of them will interfere with your reaching our place.2 After you are at Charleston Coles Co Sept[September] 18th you will have Sufficient time to come here and return in season for your meeting at Galesburg Perhaps you may have some appointments of your own between those Discusions, but could you not recall a few of them, so that you might come up and see
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and talk to us "Winnebagoes"3 we will treat treat you as well as we "natives" know how and pay your exspences en route & back again at least Evry^body^ wants you to come.
Either 23d or 24th Sept will suit us please let us know before the 21st inst if you can as that will ^be^ the time of the next meeting
I hope to See you at Freeport on the 27 inst4
yours most trulyH P Sloan prs[president] W. A. SHon. A. LincolnSpringfield Ill

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AUG[AUGUST] 12 1858
Hon. Abram LincolnSpringfieldIllinois
[ docketing ]
H. P. Sloan
1Hampton P. Sloan wrote and signed this letter. He also wrote Abraham Lincoln's name and address on the envelope shown in the third image.
2Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas were competing against one another in the 1858 Federal Election for a seat in the U.S. Senate. Douglas was the incumbent and Lincoln was the Illinois Republican Party’s candidate. For a time, Lincoln followed Douglas on the campaign trail, delivering speeches either later in the evening after Douglas finished, or the next day. On July 24, Lincoln challenged Douglas to a series of formal debates. Douglas agreed, and these became the Lincoln-Douglas Debates. The debate schedule, submitted by Douglas and agreed to by Lincoln, included Ottawa on August 21, Freeport on August 27, Jonesboro on September 15, Charleston on September 18, Galesburg on October 7, Quincy on October 13, and Alton on October 15.
3Rockford, Illinois is located in Winnebago County.
Webster's New Geographical Dictionary (Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster, 1988), 511.
4If Lincoln replied to this letter, his response has not been located.
In the end, Lincoln did not deliver a campaign address at the Winnebago County Agricultural Society’s 1858 fair. Between September 22 and 24, he delivered campaign speeches in Danville and Urbana instead. At the time, the northern counties of Illinois—such as Winnebago—were a Republican stronghold. Both Lincoln and Douglas focused their 1858 campaigns on central Illinois.
Ultimately, in the local elections of 1858, Republicans won a majority of all votes cast in Illinois, but pro-Douglas Democrats retained control of the Illinois General Assembly. Members of the General Assembly voted for and elected the state’s representatives in the U.S. Senate and, in the federal election of 1858, Douglas won reelection. Through the campaign, however, and in particular through his participation in the Lincoln-Douglas Debates, Lincoln gained national recognition as well as standing within the Republican Party.
The Lincoln Log: A Daily Chronology of the Life of Abraham Lincoln, September, https://thelincolnlog.org/Results.aspx?type=CalendarMonth&year=1858&month=9; Allen C. Guelzo, “Houses Divided: Lincoln, Douglas, and the Political Landscape of 1858,” The Journal of American History 94 (September 2007), 394, 404, 414-16; Michael Burlingame, Abraham Lincoln: A Life, 1:476, 556-57.
5Lincoln wrote this docketing on the left side of the envelope shown in the third image.

Autograph Letter Signed, 3 page(s), Abraham Lincoln Papers, Library of Congress (Washington, DC).