Lamon, Ward H.

Born: 1828-01-06 Frederick County, Virginia

Died: 1893-05-07 Martinsburg, West Virginia

Ward H. Lamon grew up in Bunker Hill, Virginia, where he received his early public school education. He migrated west to Illinois in 1847 to continue his education under the direction of his cousin in Danville. In 1849, Lamon studied law with Oliver L. Davis. He attended a Louisville, Ohio, law school during the winter and returned in the spring of 1850 to open a law practice in Danville. He rode the Eighth Judicial Circuit with Judge David Davis during most of the 1850s. He was engaged in at least 190 cases with or against Abraham Lincoln. Voters elected Lamon as state's attorney for the Eighth Judicial Circuit in the fall of 1856. A few months later, Lamon moved to Bloomington. He campaigned for Lincoln both in the 1854 and 1858 senate campaigns as well as in the 1860 presidential contest. Lamon accompanied Lincoln on his inaugural journey to Washington, DC, as Lincoln's bodyguard. Lincoln appointed Lamon Marshal of the District of Columbia in April 1861, and Lamon worked closely with the President throughout the Civil War.

Lavern Marshall Hamand, "Ward Hill Lamon: Lincoln's 'Particular Friend'" (Ph.D. diss., University of Illinois, 1949), 5-6; Jonathan Lurie, "Lamon, Ward Hill," American National Biography, ed. by John A. Garraty and Mark C. Carnes (New York: Oxford University Press, 1999), 13:86-87; Clint Clay Tilton, “Lincoln and Lamon: Partners and Friends,” Transactions of the Illinois State Historical Society, 1931, 175-228; For Lincoln's cases involving Lamon, search "Lamon, Ward Hill," Benner, Martha L., and Cullom Davis et al., eds. The Law Practice of Abraham Lincoln: Complete Documentary Edition, 2d edition (Springfield: Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, 2009), Illustration courtesy of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library, Springfield, IL.