The Writings of Carl Schurz/To Mrs. Schurz, February 10th, March 4th, 1861

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Sringfield, Feb. 10, 1861 (evening).

I have just left Lincoln with whom I spent the whole afternoon and a part of the evening. We canvassed everything that was of common interest and were mutually very cordial. Suddenly bringing our conversation to a halt, he said: “I will give you a mark of confidence which I have given no other man.” Then he locked the door and read to me the draft of his inaugural address. After we had discussed it point by point, he said: “Now you know better than any man in this country how I stand, and you may be sure that I shall never betray my principles and my friends.” (Don't mention this reading of the inaugural.) As I was leaving him after this long conversation, in which he explained his opinions and plans with the greatest frankness, I told him that I should ask his Administration for a few offices for my friends. He answered: “You write to me and you may be sure that I shall attend to everything you may ask for; and as for your own case, which you have not spoken of to me, I shall never forget you.” Others tell me that he himself has spoken of sending me to Sardinia.

Washington, March 4, 1861.

It was literally impossible to write Saturday or yesterday. People crowded about me so that I was scarcely able to move. And this morning I can barely steal a few moments; so forgive me if I am brief.

The great day has come; the city is quiet; the soldiers ready; a countless mass of Republicans from different States throng the streets. Probably there will be no disturbance. The preparations made by the Government are excellent.