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Morgan, Jr., Richard P.

Born: 1828-09-17 Stockbridge, Massachusetts

Died: 1910-05-20 Chicago, Illinois

Flourished: Illinois

Richard P. Morgan, Jr., civil engineer and farmer, assisted in the construction of the Hudson River Railroad in New York before moving to Illinois in 1852 to supervise the construction of a segment of the Chicago and Mississippi Railroad. From the time construction was completed until about 1857, he served as the general superintendent of the railroad and of its successor, the Chicago, Alton, and St. Louis Railroad. As superintendent, Morgan was headquartered in Bloomington, and retained Abraham Lincoln on several occasions as attorney for the railroad. After 1857, he farmed for a time in the vicinity of the village of Dwight, where he entertained the future King Edward VII during the latter’s 1860 visit to the United States. Later in life, Morgan recollected that he had met Lincoln about 1853 when the two men shared a room in Bloomington while Lincoln was on the circuit. Morgan served as a delegate from Livingston County to the 1860 Illinois State Republican Convention which nominated Lincoln for president. He registered for the draft in Wilmington, Illinois in 1863, but there is no further evidence that he actually served in the Civil War. Morgan married Mary E. Rutzer in 1854, and the pair had three children who survived to adulthood. By 1860, he owned real estate valued at $40,000 and $10,000 in personal property.

Abraham Lincoln: By Some Men Who Knew Him (Bloomington, IL: Pantagraph Printing & Stationery, 1910), 83-104; U.S. Census Office, Seventh Census of the United States (1850), Poughkeepsie, Dutchess County, NY, 71; The Free West (Chicago), 2 November 1854, 3:6; Illinois Daily Journal (Springfield), 16 April 1855, 2:5; For Lincoln’s railroad cases during Morgan’s tenure as superintendent, search “Chicago & Mississippi RR,” and “Chicago, Alton, & St. Louis RR,” under Participant, Martha L. Benner and Cullom Davis et al., eds., The Law Practice of Abraham Lincoln: Complete Documentary Edition, 2d edition (Springfield: Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, 2009), http://www.lawpracticeofabrahamlincoln.org; Bloomington Pantagraph (IL), 21 August 1877, 3:2; U.S. Census Office, Eighth Census of the United States (1860), Livingston County, IL, 80; U.S., Civil War Draft Registrations Records, 1863-1865 (Provo, UT: Ancestry.com Operations, 2010); The Boston Journal, 21 May 1910, 2:6; The Weekly Pantagraph (Bloomington, IL), 27 May 1910, 8:1; Gravestone, Oak Lawn Cemetery, Livingston County, IL.