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Barret, Sarah Rickard

Born: 1824-03-02 Fauquier County, Virginia

Died: 1911-10-25 Kansas City, Missouri

Flourished: 1830-1850 Sangamon County, Illinois

Alternate name: Rickard

Sarah moved from Virginia to Sangamon County, Illinois, along with her parents and siblings in 1830. Sarah's older sister Elizabeth married to William Butler, a close friend and political ally of Abraham Lincoln. As a young girl, Sarah spent much time in the home of her sister and brother-in-law, and there she became acquainted with Lincoln. According to Sarah as well as Lincoln's close friend Joshua F. Speed, Lincoln proposed to Sarah in the winter of 1840-41, but she declined as "he seemed allmost like an older Brother." In 1850, she married Dr. Richard F. Barret, and they made their home in St. Louis.

Joshua F. Speed to William H. Herndon, 30 November 1866; Sarah Rickard Barret to William H. Herndon, 3 August 1888 and 12 August 1888, Douglas L. Wilson and Rodney O. Davis, eds., Herndon’s Informants: Letters, Interviews, and Statements about Abraham Lincoln (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1998), 663-65; John Carroll Power and S. A. Power, History of the Early Settlers of Sangamon County, Illinois (Springfield, IL: Edwin A. Wilson, 1876), 97, 165, 613-14; Illinois Statewide Marriage Index, Sangamon County, 14 March 1850, Illinois State Archives, Springfield, IL; Abraham Lincoln to Joshua F. Speed; Abraham Lincoln to Joshua F. Speed; Abraham Lincoln to Joshua F. Speed; Illinois State Journal (Springfield), 28 October 1911, 9:1.