“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Quincy in Adams County, Illinois — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)

Lincoln Correspondent

Looking for Lincoln

Lincoln Correspondent Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Pfingsten, June 11, 2012
1. Lincoln Correspondent Marker
"The points you propose to press upon Douglas, he will be very hard to get up to" ):Lincoln letter to Henry Asbury, 1858). Originally a Kentucky Whig, Henry Asbury was one of the founders of the Republican Party in Illinois along with Abraham Jonas, Archibald Williams, Nehemiah Bushnell, O.H. Browning, and Abraham Lincoln, with whom he was a frequent correspondent. Asbury is credited with framing for Lincoln the four questions posed to Stephen A. Douglas at Freeport during the 1858 Lincoln-Douglas Debates. Asbury believed his most important question was: "Can the people of a United States territory in any lawful way against the wish of any citizen of the United States exclude Slavery from its limits prior to the formation of a state constitution?" During a meeting with Quincy Republican leaders and Horace Greeley in December 1858, Asbury suggested Lincoln as a presidential candidate. As President, Lincoln demonstrated high regard for him by having Jonas and Asbury judge a man arrested for disloyalty. Lincoln also appointed Asbury as Provost-Marshall of the Quincy Military District.

"...a thicket of hazel brush"

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described Quincy when Henry Asbury arrived in 1834. Asbury studied law with O.H. Browning and became a law partner with Abraham Jonas. He was elected a justice of the peace and was appointed Register of the Quincy Land Office in 1849 by President Taylor. Asbury wrote Asbury's Justice, a method of procedure for justice courts, and Reminiscences of Quincy, Illinois.

Lincoln's political strategy was strengthened by the questions Asbury framed for Lincoln to ask Douglas during their Freeport Debate. It was reported that many Republican leaders came to Lincoln the night before the speech and urged him not to put the interrogatories to Douglas, saying, "If you do you can never be senator." "Gentlemen," replied Lincoln, "I am killing larger game; if Douglas answers, he can never be president, and the battle of 1860 is worth a hundred of this." Asbury was proud of his connection with that incident and believed he contributed greatly to the election of President Lincoln. He also prized highly his correspondence with Lincoln. Lincoln valued this association as well, writing in 1860, "It is a little curious, and not wholy (sic) uninteresting to look over those old letters of yours and mine."
Erected by State of Illinois Historic Preservation Agency & Looking for Lincoln Heritage Coalition.
Topics and series.

Henry Asbury image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Pfingsten, June 11, 2012
2. Henry Asbury
This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Government & Politics. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #12 Zachary Taylor, the Former U.S. Presidents: #16 Abraham Lincoln, and the Looking for Lincoln series lists. A significant historical month for this entry is December 1858.
Location. 39° 55.982′ N, 91° 24.511′ W. Marker is in Quincy, Illinois, in Adams County. Marker is at the intersection of North 5th Street and Hampshire Street on North 5th Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 500 Hampshire Street, Quincy IL 62301, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Lincoln Promoter (here, next to this marker); William L. King Building (within shouting distance of this marker); Lincoln's Quincy (within shouting distance of this marker); Downtown Quincy in 1858 (within shouting distance of this marker); Political Campaigning in 1858 (within shouting distance of this marker); Changing Slavery (within shouting distance of this marker); Quincy's Judge Douglas (within shouting distance of this marker); Douglas' Disciple (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Quincy.
Credits. This page was last revised on October 8, 2019. It was originally submitted on August 25, 2012, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. This page has been viewed 577 times since then and 35 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on August 25, 2012, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland.

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Dec. 4, 2023