View up to date information on how Illinois is handling the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) from the Illinois Department of Public Health


Abraham Lincoln to Thomas Ewing, 13 April 18501
Hon: T. Ewing, Secretary &C.[etc]Dear Sir:
I understand there is a project on foot to divide the Pension Agency ^of this state^– I do not know, nor have ^I^ the means here of ascertaining, whether such division may be made by or within your Department, or can only be made by act of Congress– The present Pension Agent is, of course, opposed to the division, and has written me on the subject– He is my brother-in-law, which, though it may interest my feelings in this matter, as a matter of right, is nothing–2 I hope and believe he is a faithful and efficient officer– The division would injure him, while I can not perceive that any public interest would be subserved by it– Do what you can, you can not relieve the Pensioners from the necessity of sending Powers, and receiving their money through the mails, and this can be done quite as well to and from a single point in the State as two– I even believe some confusion and inconvenience might result to the Pensioners themselves by their sending to one agency for their money when they should send to the other– It would certainly give the officers considerable trouble at first, in separating the names upon the rolls– Unless it be of some advantage to have two offices upon which two officers will starve, instead of one, to which one can attend and live, I can perceive no good ^whatever^ in the division– If the question of division is, or is to be, before Congress please pass this over to Col Baker3
Your Obt Servt[Obedient Servant]A. Lincoln
<Page 2>
FREE
BLOOMINGTON Il.[Illinois]
[?] 16
Hon. Secretary of the InteriorWashingtonD.C.
[docketing]
04/13/1850
April 13. 1850.
Hon: A. Lincoln.
Against the division of the Pension Agency of the State of Illinois
[docketing]
Ans,[Answer] that there is no intention to make any changes in Agency
[docketing]
04/25/1850
And[Answered] Apl 25./50.
1Abraham Lincoln wrote and signed this letter, including the address on the last sheet, which was folded to create an envelope.
2William S. Wallace, Lincoln’s brother-in-law, was appointed pension agent for the state of Illinois in 1849 by President Zachary Taylor. Lincoln had recommended Wallace for the position. Wallace’s letter to Lincoln on this topic has not been located, but it was most likely Wallace who informed Lincoln of rumors about a potential impending division of the Illinois pension agency.
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), 140; Memorandum concerning Orville Paddock and William S. Wallace.
3Secretary of the Interior Thomas Ewing replied to this letter on April 25, 1850, noting that the U.S. Department of the Interior had no intention of dividing the Illinois pension agency in two. Wallace remained the sole pension agent for Illinois until 1853, when he was replaced by Isaac B. Curran.
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), 151; 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), 152.

Autograph Letter Signed, 2 page(s), Andre De Coppet Collection, Box 21, Folder 17, Department of Rare Books and Special Collections, Princeton University (Princeton, NJ).