I NEVER met Abraham Lincoln until early in January, 1861, some two months after his election to the Presidency. I had been brought into very close and confidential relations with him by correspondence during the Pennsylvania campaign of 1860. His letters were frequent, and always eminently practical, on the then supreme question of electing the Republican State ticket in October. It was believed on all sides that unless Pennsylvania could be carried in October, Lincoln's defeat would be certain in November. Pennsylvania was thus accepted as the key to Republican success, and Lincoln naturally watched the struggle with intense interest. In accordance with his repeated solicitations, he was advised from the headquarters of the State Committee, of which I was chairman, of all the varied phases of the struggle. It soon became evident from his inquiries and versatile suggestions that he took nothing for granted. He bad to win the preliminary battle in October, and he left nothing undone within his power to ascertain the exact situation and to understand every peril involved in it.
The Republican party in Pennsylvania, although then but freshly organized, had many different elements and bitter factional feuds within its own household, and all who actively participated in party efforts were more or less involved in them. I did not entirely escape the bit-