By Jonathan White
Wisdom and tales from considered one of America's most unusual criminal minds
Abraham Lincoln's good fortune as a political candidate was once rooted in adventure within the court. regardless of a presidency plagued with ethical and criminal crises, this self-taught prairie attorney deftly led the kingdom via hoping on the middle rules he honed in his early profession: truthfully, strength of mind, and a strong feel of social accountability. Aspiring and practising attorneys alike frequently appeared to Lincoln for guidance—and his hard-won knowledge is as correct at the present time as ever.
Drawn from his correspondence with aspiring lawyers in addition to observations from pals and associates, Lincoln on legislation, management, and Life is an insightful choice of Lincoln's undying charges, quips, and stories.
"This can be required examining in each legislation tuition in America."—Frank J. Williams, retired leader Justice, Rhode Island splendid courtroom, and founding chair of The Lincoln Forum.
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Additional info for Lincoln on Law, Leadership, and Life
WHITE here in those days worth speaking of. I don’t think he studied very much. I think he learned his law more in the study of cases. He would work hard and learn all there was in a case he had in hand. He got to be a pretty good lawyer though his general knowledge of law was never very formidable. But he would study out his case and make about as much of it as anybody. Logan’s somewhat disparaging remarks may have been an overstatement. But even Lincoln could be modest and introspective about his own skills and abilities.
In 1848, he advised a fellow Illinois attorney: In law it is good policy to never plead what you need not, lest you oblige yourself to prove what you can not. Reflect on this well before you proceed. E. M. Prince of Bloomington, Illinois, heard Lincoln argue more than a hundred cases in court. ” Another important lesson was to know his opponent’s side better than his own. indd 46 11/21/14 5: LINCOLN ON LAW, LEADERSHIP, AND LIFE | 47 the Civil War, Lincoln told Speaker of the House Schuyler Colfax that “a peculiarity of his own life from his earliest manhood had been, that he habitually studied the opposite side of every disputed question, of every law case, of every political issue, more exhaustively, if possible, than his own side.
Lincoln strove to be fair in all of his dealings with clients. When he drew up papers for the leasing of a hotel in Quincy, Illinois, his client, George P. Floyd, sent him twenty-five dollars in payment. indd 27 Dear Sir: I have just received yours of 16th, with check on Flagg & Savage for twenty-five dollars. You must think I am a high-priced man. You are too liberal with your money. Fifteen dollars is enough for the job. I send 11/21/14 5: 28 | JONATHAN W. WHITE you a receipt for fifteen dollars, and return to you a ten-dollar bill.
Lincoln on Law, Leadership, and Life by Jonathan White