Lincoln's partner, John T. Stuart, had narrowly defeated popular Democrat Stephen A. Douglas in the 1838 congressional election. Stuart won by a margin of 36 votes out of a total of 36,495 cast. In Washington more than a year later, Stuart still feared that Douglas might contest the election. Young Mr. Lincoln reported to his friend on the political scene back home in Springfield.
Springfield, November 14, 1839
I have been to the Secretary's office within the last hour; and find things precisely as you left them - no new arrivals of returns on either side. Douglas has not been here since you left. A report is in circulation here now, that he has abandoned the idea of going to Washington; though the report does not come in a very authentic form, so far as I can learn. Though, by the way speaking of authenticity, you know that if we had heard Douglas say that he had abandoned the contest, it would not be very authentic. There is no news here. Noah, I still think will be elected very easily. I am afraid of our race for Representative. Dr. Knapp has become a candidate; and I fear the few votes he will get will be taken from us. Also, someone has been tampering with old Esquire Wycoff, and induced him to send in his name to be announced as a candidate. Francis refused to announce him without seeing him, and now I suppose there is to be a fuss about it. I have been so busy that I have not seen Mrs. Stuart since you left, though I understand she wrote you by today's mail, which will inform you more about her than I could. The very moment a speaker is elected write me who he is. Your friend as ever
This document is a copy of the unedited text of a written work by Abraham Lincoln. Some typographical errors which were present in the original text appear here as well. This document was copied in its entirety from The Living Lincoln, edited by Paul M. Angle and Earl Schenck Miers, published by Marboro Books Corp.