07.15.11 : Life of Lincoln, by William Henry Herndon (1818-1891) and Jesse W. Weik, published in 1888.
We suggest a good reproduction: Herndon’s Life of Lincoln, a Da Capo Paperback, published in 1983.
Notes Concerning the Author
The primary source of this book is Abraham Lincoln’s law partner, William Herndon. He was born in Kentucky, moved to Springfield Illinois as a boy with his parents, studied law in a firm in which Lincoln worked, passed the bar and accepted an invitation to join Abraham Lincoln in establishing a new two-man law practice. From that point, going forward, Herndon was far more important than any American in advancing Lincoln to the Presidency. After the President’s death, Herndon undertook a most thorough investigation of Lincoln’s background growing up.
Herndon remained in Springfield after Lincoln went east to become President. And this biography stops at the point of his departure. Herndon’s extensive research in Lincoln’s early years in Kentucky, Indiana and Illinois is the foundation of most biographer’s knowledge of Lincoln’s life prior to becoming President. Herndon struggled to complete the writing of his biography. But young Jesse Weik pitched in and helped him complete it. This book is essential to any Lincoln biographical collection.