The Death of Lincoln [APRIL 1-MAY 1, 1865]
ON DECEMBER 6, 1864, Lincoln named Chase Chief Justice of the United States, and the Senate unanimously confirmed the nomination. When he learned the news, Chase at once wrote the President: "I cannot sleep before I thank [you] for this mark of your confidence, and especially for the manner in which the nomination was made. I shall never forget either and trust that you will never repent either. Be assured that I prize your confidence and good will more than nomination or office." On December 13th he was sworn in as sixth Chief Justice of the United States.
"Of Mr. Chase's ability and of his soundness on the general issues of the war there is, of course, no question," Lincoln had said when debating the nomination. "I have only one doubt about his appointment. He is a man of unbounded ambition, and has been working all his life to become President. That he can never be; and I fear that if I make him chief-justice he will simply become more restless and uneasy and neglect the place in his strife and intrigue to make himself President. If I were sure that he would go on to the bench and give up his aspirations and