Abraham Lincoln to Charles H. Ray, 27 June 18581
Dr C. H. RayMy dear Sir
How, in God's name, do you let such paragraph's into the Tribune, as the inclosed cut from that paper of yesterday?2 Does Sheahan write them?3 How can you have failed to perceive that in that short paragraph you have completely answered all your own well put complaints of Greely and Sister Burlingame?– What right have you to interfere in Indiana, more that they in Illinois? And what possible argument can be made why all Republicans shall stand out of Hon. John G. Davis' way, in his district in Indiana, that can not be made why all Republican's in Illinois shall stand out of Hon. S. A. Douglas' way?–
The part in larger type is plainly editorial, and your editorial at that, as you do not credit it to any other paper– I confess it astonishes me–4
Yours trulyA. Lincoln

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[ enclosure ]
Indiana—John G. Davis Thrown Overboard.
Editor Ind. Journal: The Democratic Convention for the Seventh Congressional District, was held here to-day. Henry Secrest, of Putnam Co., was nominated on the first ballot. John G. Davis' name was not presented to the Convention. Parke County refused to cast her vote.
Resolutions were adopted endorsing the Administration and the English bill.5
Resolutions, endorsing Douglas and the course of the Hon. John G. Davis were voted down. Much dissatisfaction prevails among the Anti-Lecompton men, and the probabilities are that another Convention will be called.6
The Anti-Lecompton Democrats and Republicans will unite upon Davis and elect him over Doughface Secrest by a majority of thousands. Davis proved true and faithful, and acted with the Republicans all through the session. He spurned the English bill with scorn and contempt, and opposed the Lecompton iniquity at every step from the opening to the adjournment of Congress, and never gave out a doubtful word. He deserves well of his constituents, and popular sentiment demands his return to Congress. We hope that no Republican of the VIIth District will hesitate to vote for him.7

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1Abraham Lincoln wrote and signed this letter.
2Lincoln is discussing an editorial, which he enclosed in this letter and which is shown in the first image, that appeared in the June 26, 1858 edition of the Chicago Daily Tribune. The first portion of the editorial, printed in smaller type, was originally published in the June 24 edition of the Indianapolis Daily Journal; the second portion, printed in larger type, is an editorial written by a member of the Chicago Daily Tribune‘s staff—most likely Joseph Medill, according to a letter Charles H. Ray later wrote to Lincoln.
Chicago Daily Tribune (IL), 26 June 1858, 2:1; The Indianapolis Daily Journal (IN), 24 June 1858, 2:2.
3James W. Sheahan was a strong ally of Stephen A. Douglas’ during the election campaign of 1858 and was known to employ less than scrupulous tactics to support Douglas’ bid for reelection to the U.S. Senate. Lincoln was running against Douglas as the Republican Party’s candidate for the U.S. Senate.
Michael Burlingame, Abraham Lincoln: A Life (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2008), 1:458, 467.
4During the campaign of 1858, the Democratic Party faced a split between pro-Douglas and pro-James Buchanan factions. The split occurred after Douglas, in December 1857, spoke out against the Lecompton Constitution, and criticized President Buchanan for supporting it. Although Douglas later denied it, he intimated in correspondence and in meetings that he was finished with the Democratic Party and courted political support from Republicans in an effort to bolster his chances of reelection to the U.S. Senate. Some Republicans, excited by Douglas’ repudiation of the Lecompton Constitution, considered supporting him as well as local anti-Lecompton Democratic candidates. Douglas met in person with prominent Republicans such as Horace Greeley, who, via the New York Tribune, urged voters in Illinois to support Douglas’ reelection bid. Anson Burlingame, another prominent Republican, agreed with Greeley and delivered an address in the U.S. House of Representatives urging voters to support both Douglas and his political allies.
Throughout the 1858 campaign Lincoln discouraged Republican involvement in Democratic factional disputes and urged loyalty to the Republican Party in the impending election. Lincoln had also expressed doubt at least as early as 1856 about the wisdom and efficacy of political parties interfering in the electoral campaigns of other states. The Chicago Daily Tribune had previously published articles noting how pleased some Democrats were with Greeley’s support for Douglas and criticizing Republicans in other states—including Burlingame—for urging Republicans in Illinois to unite with anti-Lecompton Democrats in order to aid Douglas’ efforts to secure reelection to the U.S. Senate. At the time, members of the Illinois General Assembly voted for and elected the state’s representatives in the U.S. Senate; therefore, the local races for the Illinois House of Representatives and Illinois Senate were highly relevant to the outcome of the state’s U.S. Senate race.
The Douglas/Buchanan conflict extended to local political campaigns for the U.S. House of Representatives in 1858. In the Indiana Seventh Congressional District, pro-Lecompton Democrat Henry Secrest challenged Anti-Lecompton Democrat John G. Davis, the incumbent, for the seat.
Michael Burlingame, Abraham Lincoln: A Life, 1:445-48, 453-54; Abraham Lincoln to James W. Grimes; Chicago Daily Tribune (IL), 31 December 1857, 1:2; 28 April 1858, 2:1; Allen C. Guelzo, “Houses Divided: Lincoln, Douglas, and the Political Landscape of 1858,” The Journal of American History 94 (September 2007), 394; Greenville Journal (OH), 30 June 1858, 2:4; The Daily Morning News (Davenport, IA), 30 June 1858, 2:3.
5This is a reference to the administration of President Buchanan and to a congressional bill proposed by William H. English and others in the spring of 1858. The so-called English bill proposed sending the Lecompton Constitution back to the voters of the Kansas Territory with a modification to the territory’s request for a federal land grant—reduced to 4 million acres from the requested 23 million acres. In essence, the bill offered Kansas voters statehood in exchange for accepting slavery. If Kansas voters rejected the offer, the English bill stipulated that the territory could not reapply for statehood until a census showed it possessed a population of at least 90,000 people. Douglas considered supporting the bill, but ultimately opposed it. The bill passed both the U.S. Senate and the U.S. House on April 30, and President Buchanan signed it into law. On August 2, Kansans overwhelmingly rejected this Lecompton Constitution-cum-land grant by a vote of 11,300 to 1,788.
David M. Potter and Don E. Fehrenbacher, The Impending Crisis, 1848-1861 (New York: Harper & Row, 1976), 323-25.
6Delegates to Indiana’s Seventh Congressional District convention rejected a resolution endorsing Douglas’ anti-Lecompton stance by a vote of 42 to 48. Davis lost the Democratic Party’s nomination for the district by a similar margin, but later joined the race as an independent anti-Lecompton candidate. Local Republicans backed Davis’ candidacy. There is no evidence that the district’s Democrats held a second convention.
The Evansville Daily Journal (IN), 25 June 1858, 3:3; Marshall County Democrat (Plymouth, IN), 29 July 1858, 4:1; Gregory Peek, “’The True and Ever Living Principle of States Rights and Popular Sovereignty’: Douglas Democrats and Indiana Republicans Allied, 1857-1859,” Indiana Magazine of History 111 (December 2015), 406.
7Ultimately, Davis won reelection to the U.S. House, earning nearly 11,000 votes to Secrest’s roughly 7,500. In Illinois’ local elections of that year, Republicans won a majority of the votes cast, but pro-Douglas Democrats retained control of the Illinois General Assembly and, in the end, Douglas won reelection to the U.S. Senate in the 1858 Federal Election. 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.
Lincoln and Ray exchanged at least eleven additional letters during 1858 related to the local and federal elections of that year. Despite the dissatisfaction he voices in this June 27 letter, Lincoln remained on good terms with Ray and, in June 1859, while renewing his subscription to the Chicago Press and Tribune, expressed gratitude for the paper’s “devotion to our cause always, and to me personally last year.”
Seymour Times (IN), 2 December 1858, 3:1; Daily Illinois State Journal (Springfield), 13 November 1858, 2:3; Allen C. Guelzo, “Houses Divided: Lincoln, Douglas, and the Political Landscape of 1858,” 414-16; Michael Burlingame, Abraham Lincoln: A Life, 1:556-57; Charles H. Ray to Abraham Lincoln; Charles H. Ray to Abraham Lincoln; Charles H. Ray to Abraham Lincoln; Charles H. Ray to Abraham Lincoln; Abraham Lincoln to Charles H. Ray; Abraham Lincoln to the Editors, Chicago Tribune; Ray, Medill & Company to Abraham Lincoln; Charles H. Ray to Abraham Lincoln; Charles H. Ray to Abraham Lincoln; Charles H. Ray to Abraham Lincoln; Abraham Lincoln to Charles H. Ray; Abraham Lincoln to the Chicago Press & Tribune.
8This image duplicates the previous image with the exception that text beneath the enclosed article clipping has been exposed. All the text on this page, including the enclosed article clipping and the text underneath, was transcribed on page one. The editors have not replicated the transcription on this page.

Autograph Letter Signed, 2 page(s), Robert R. McCormick Papers, Cantigny, Colonel Robert R. McCormick Research Center (Wheaton, IL).