Five thousand people attended this convention, among them many Democrats who were friends of Lincoln. Other Democrats were there, who were not a little provoked at the course of John Hanks and others of their party. One of them accosted Mr. Lincoln, after the adjournment,
And so youre Abe Lincoln?
Thats my name, sir, answered Mr. Lincoln.
They say youre a self-made man.
Well, yes; what there is of me is self-made, replied Mr. Lincoln.
Wall, added the Democrat, after surveying him from head to foot, all Ive got to say is, that it was a darned bad job.
It should be said that, after Mr. Lincolns senatorial contest with Mr. Douglas, particularly in 1859, he spoke by invitation in Kansas, Ohio, New York, and several of the New England States. His speeches were pronounced masterly. Cooper Institute was thronged to hear him in New York city, and he was introduced by the poet Bryant. The next morning the Tribune said, No man ever before made such an impression on his first appeal to a New York audience.
While in New York two incidents transpired which show much of the man. He met an old acquaintance from Illinois in a mercantile establishment. How have you fared since you left Illinois? inquired Mr. Lincoln.
I have made a hundred thousand dollars, and lost it all. And how is it with you, Mr. Lincoln?
Oh, very well, Mr. Lincoln replied; I have the cottage at Springfield, and about eight thousand dollars in money. If they make me vice-president with Seward, as some say they will, I hope I shall be able to increase it to twenty thousand; and that is as much as any man ought to want.
He stopped in New York over Sunday, and strolled alone into the Sabbath School of the Five Points Mission, interested to learn what could be done for the street children of the city. The superintendent was impressed by the appearance of the visitor, and invited him to address the girls and boys. Without hesitation he consented, and immediately began a little speech that completely captivated his young listeners. Several times he essayed to stop, but his listeners cried out, Go on, go on, sir. Do go on. It was an unusual address, and charmed both teacher and pupil alike. When he was about to depart, the superintendent said,
Pardon me; may I have the pleasure of knowing who my visitor is?
Abraham Lincoln, of Illinois, he replied.
He spoke at Norwich, Conn., and subsequently Dr. Gulliver published the following instructive and interesting account of his interview with him, on the next morning after listening to him:
The next morning I met him at the railroad station, where he was conversing with our Mayor, every few minutes looking up the track and inquiring, half-impatiently and half-quizzically, Wheres that wagon of yours? Why dont the wagon come along? On being introduced to him, he fixed his eyes upon me, and said, I have seen you before, sir! I think not, I replied: you must mistake me for some other person. No, I dont; I saw you at the Town Hall last evening. Is it possible, Mr. Lincoln, that you could observe individuals so closely in such a crowd? Oh, yes! he replied, laughing; that is my way. I dont forget faces. Were you not there? I was, sir, and I was well paid for going; adding, somewhat in the vein of pleasantry he had started, I consider it one of the most extraordinary speeches I ever heard.
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