Bloomington in McLean County, Illinois — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
My Good Friend
Judge David Davis - Mansion
— Looking for Lincoln —
The frame house (left) that once stood on the site of this Victorian mansion was the home of Abraham Lincoln’s trusted friend, legal associate, and political manager, David Davis (1815-1886). The two-story structure closely resembled Lincoln’s Springfield home. But the setting was very different. Built on the outskirts of Bloomington, Davis’s home was the center of a large farm. There were pastures, orchards, and flower gardens planted by David’s wife, Sarah. Rows of trees lined the drive that stretched from the house to Jefferson Street. In 1870, Judge Davis, who had been appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court by President Lincoln, moved the building to make way for the elegant mansion that you see today.
Abraham Lincoln Sometimes Stayed at The Davis Home during visits to Bloomington.
One memorable stay occurred during Lincoln’s 1858 senatorial campaign against Stephen A. Douglas. McLean County Republicans pulled out all the stops in preparing for Lincoln’s September fourth speech in the courthouse square. At 2:30 P.M., a procession marched to the Davis home to escort Lincoln to town in style. A number of banners bobbed
Abraham Lincoln Remained an enduring presence in David Davis’s life. On the day that Lincoln died, his twenty-one-year-old son Robert sent a telegram to Bloomington, begging Davis to take charge of the murdered president’s affairs. Davis agreed, managing the estate and securing the president’s papers in a Bloomington bank vault. He also served as “Tad” Lincoln’s legal guardian and advised Robert regarding his mother’s care. At Davis’ funeral in 1886, Robert Lincoln sat among the mourners in the mansion parlor and rode in the procession of carriages, accompanying the body to its grave. Robert later recalled, “Upon my father’s death I went to the Judge as a second father, and this he was to me until his death. I am deeply indebted to him for counsel and affectionate help on many occasions and revere his memory.”
Erected 2008 by Looking for Lincoln and the City of Bloomington.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Agriculture • Government & Politics • Settlements & Settlers. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #16 Abraham Lincoln, and the Looking for Lincoln series lists. A significant historical year for this entry is 1870.
Location. 40° 28.899′ N, 88° 58.841′ W. Marker is in Bloomington, Illinois, in McLean County. Marker is at the intersection of Davis Avenue and Monroe Drive, on the right when traveling north on Davis Avenue. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Bloomington IL 61701, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. David Davis Mansion (a few steps from this marker); Edmund O'Connell House (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Cloverlawn (about 500 feet away); David Davis III & IV House (about 500 feet away); James S. Neville House (approx. 0.2 miles away); John A. Wilcox House (approx. 0.2 miles away); Illinois Central R. R. (approx. Ľ mile away); An Arthur L. Pillsbury Design (approx. 0.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Bloomington.
Also see . . .
1. Looking for Lincoln. Many resources for hunting for Lincoln through out History and Illinois, for all ages. (Submitted on October 9, 2008, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana.)
2. Looking for Lincoln Video - on P.B.S. Follow Henry Louis Gates, Jr. "...from Illinois, to Gettysburg, to Washington, D. C., and face to face with people who live with Lincoln every day...". (Submitted on October 22, 2009, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana.)
Credits. This page was last revised on October 11, 2021. It was originally submitted on October 9, 2008, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana. This page has been viewed 2,168 times since then and 39 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on October 9, 2008, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana. 3. submitted on July 10, 2021, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York. 4, 5, 6. submitted on October 9, 2008, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana. 7. submitted on April 4, 2009, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana. • Kevin W. was the editor who published this page.