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Frederick A. Thomas to Abraham Lincoln, 24 June 18491
Hon A LincolnSir
At the request of our mutual friend E Z Ryan I have written to the Secretary of the Interior relative to his application for the appointment to the Register of the Land Office at Palestine.
Herewith you will please find the same.2 Will you have the goodness to deliver it. On behalf of Zane, it is only necessary for me to say to you that his appointment will give the greatest satisfaction to all the prominent men of the party here He has labored like a hero in the cause and now that he has asked I hope he will receive.3
Some two weeks since I obtained several names for you at Vincennes for Com.[Commissioner] G. L. O. which were forwarded. I hope you recd[received] them. I will be much gratified if you succeede 4
Very Respectfuly
your Obt svt[Obedient servant]
F. A. Thomas
<Page 2>
Hon A. LincolnWashington D– C.
[docketing]
07/20/1849
20th July /49
E Z. Ryan for Register at Palestine, Ills[Illinois]
Recommended by F. A. Thomas
1Frederick A. Thomas wrote and signed this letter, including the address on the last page, which was folded to create an envelope.
2The enclosed correspondence that Thomas references was not found with this letter, and it has not been located.
3Ebenezer Z. Ryan and James M. McLean were vying to become register of the U.S. General Land Office in Palestine. McLean would receive the appointment and hold the position until 1853.
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.
4Thomas references the contest to see who would replace Richard M. Young as commissioner of the U.S. General Land Office. Originally, only Justin H. Butterfield, James L. D. Morrison, and Cyrus Edwards were vying to become commissioner. Abraham Lincoln entered the competition after learning that Butterfield was favored over Morrison and Edwards.
Thomas addresses Lincoln at Washington, DC, because, as competition for the job intensified, William H. Henderson and Josiah Lucas, Lincoln supporters living in Washington, DC, urged Lincoln to come to the nation’s capital to personally lobby for the position. On June 9, Butterfield wrote Lincoln suggesting that neither go to Washington. Lincoln did not respond to this suggestion, and on June 10, both set out for the capital. Lincoln arrived on or before June 19. Jesse K. Dubois made Lincoln aware of Thomas’ efforts on his behalf in a letter dated June 11. Ultimately, neither Morrison, Edwards, nor Lincoln received the appointment; the job went to Butterfield instead. See the General Land Office Affair.

Autograph Letter Signed, 2 page(s), Box 252, RG 48, Entry 15: Records of the Office of the Secretary of the Interior, 1833-1964, Divisional Records, 1843-1943, Records of the Appointments Division, 1817-1922, Field Office Appointment Papers, NACP.