Jesse K. Dubois to Abraham Lincoln, [15 August 1856]1
Dear Lincoln
I cannot rest contented without your promise me to come to this region. You must come, and every day more clearly Demonstrates the Necessity of seeing you. If we can only receive the Filmore men we are Safe and as they are all old Whigs it takes and old Whig like you to Straighten them into line.2 I learned today, That Capt[Captain] Diller of your place has been to Washington City to make arrangements for the coming Canvass and he says Douglas will attend all thier mass meetings, and Richardson commences his canvass in Lawrenceville on the 20 Inst, And we want a big gun or so to arouse up boys. Do promise me to be here at court so as to stir them up3 I know it is taxing you much but you must be paid and I suppose that matter will be attended to by the committee4
Yours TrulyJ. K Dubois
1Jesse K. Dubois wrote and signed this letter.
The actual date of this letter is unknown. The editors have inferred the date of August 15, 1856 because the letter was enclosed in a letter from James Miller to Abraham Lincoln, which was dated August 15, 1856.
2In the 1856 Federal Election, Republicans nominated John C. Fremont as their first presidential candidate, while Democrats nominated James Buchanan. The American Party, in its final participation in a presidential election, nominated Millard Fillmore. Republicans, concerned that two opposition tickets would favor the Democrats, explored campaign strategies to ensure their candidate, Fremont, would be elected. In a letter to James Berdan in July 1856, Lincoln suggested a possible fusion ticket, bringing together supporters of the American and Republican parties. In the end, Lincoln implemented a mail campaign, sending form letters to Fillmore supporters informing them that every vote for their candidate in Illinois lessened his chance of becoming president.
Lincoln and his fellow Republicans failed to convince Fillmore’s supporters to unite, allowing Democrats to label their opponents as both nativists and worshippers of African Americans. Lincoln’s prediction proved prophetic. Buchanan captured Illinois with 44.1 percent of the vote to 40.2 percent for Fremont and 15.7 for Fillmore and became the fifteenth president of the United States. Indeed, if the votes received by Fremont and Fillmore in Illinois had been combined, Buchanan’s vote would not have been sufficient to carry the state.
Thomas A. Marshall to Abraham Lincoln; Thomas F. Schwartz, “Lincoln, Form Letters, and Fillmore Men,” Illinois Historical Journal 78 (Spring 1985), 66; Abraham Lincoln to Thomas Hull; Abraham Lincoln to Edward Lawrence; Abraham Lincoln to William Ryan; Abraham Lincoln to Harrison Maltby; Michael Burlingame, Abraham Lincoln: A Life (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2008), 1:432-33; Philip G. Auchampaugh, “Campaign of 1856,” Dictionary of American History, rev. ed. (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1976), 1:420-21; Howard W. Allen and Vincent A. Lacey, eds., Illinois Elections, 1818-1990 (Carbondale and Edwardsville: Southern Illinois University Press, 1992), 10.
3In his response, Lincoln promised to “strain every nerve” to visit Lawrenceville and Dubois. The fall session of the Lawrence County Circuit Court was scheduled to begin September 8, 1856.
William A. Richardson was the Democratic Party candidate for governor in 1856, challenging William H. Bissell, the Republican Party candidate, and Buckner S. Morris, the American Party candidate. Bissell defeated Richardson and Morris, garnering 47 percent of the vote to 45 percent for Richardson and 8 percent for Morris.
“An Act to Change the Limits and Fix the Time for Holding Courts in the Fourth Judicial Circuit,” 12 February 1853, General Laws of Illinois (1853), 64; David Herbert Donald, Lincoln (New York: Touchstone, 1995), 191; Howard W. Allen and Vincent A. Lacey, eds., Illinois Elections, 1818-1990, 10.
4This invitation was one of several Lincoln received during the summer and fall of 1856 as Republicans battled for political power in Illinois and the nation. Between July and November 1856, Lincoln crisscrossed the state canvassing on behalf of Republican Party candidates for political office. He delivered over fifty speeches in support of the Republican cause. Lincoln spoke in Lawrenceville on September 19, 1856. See the 1856 Federal Election.
The Lincoln Log: A Daily Chronology of the Life of Abraham Lincoln, 19 September 1856,; 1 November 1856,; Michael Burlingame, Abraham Lincoln: A Life, 1:425-33.

Autograph Letter Signed, 1 page(s), Volume Volume 2, Herndon-Weik Collection of Lincolniana, Library of Congress (Washington, DC).