Some of the quotes from the Lincoln article I posted originate in this book. I haven’t posted any free e-books in a while, so the timing is right to link to this one.
I particularly loved the sensitivity of this anecdote. Lincoln’s hands have been an historical fascination since his election. I imagine his gentle touch resonated:
When he had finished you may be sure there was no more joking or bantering. I know that for myself, I was so impressed with the poem that I felt more like crying than talking ; but as he turned to go upstairs, I said, ‘Mr. Lincoln, who wrote that? ‘ He turned and came back to where I was sitting and said: ‘ Miss Newhall, I am ashamed to say I don’t know, but if you like it I will write it off for you before I go to bed tonight and leave it for you on the table where you can get it when you have breakfast.’
It was the intention of the lawyers to leave earlier than we had planned. I was sitting at breakfast, eating by candle light, and I recall very distinctly I was eating pancakes and was in the act of cutting one, holding it with my fork while I used the knife, when I was conscious of some motion behind me, and a great big hand took hold of my left hand, or rather covering it on the table, and with his right hand around over my other shoulder, he laid down a piece of paper just in front of my plate. Before I could realize who or what it was, Mr. Lincoln moved toward the door, saying ‘ Goodbye, my dear.’ That was the last time I ever saw him.