1. Curated Grouping:
  2. The Lincolns of Springfield, Illinois

Abraham Lincoln's presentation cane

Creator:
unknown
Location:
unknown
Origin Date:
1857
Materials:
metal, wood
Measurements:
overall: 36 1/2 in x x 1 1/2 in
Item ID:
71.2009.082.0023
Holding Institution:
Lincoln Financial Foundation Collection, courtesy of the Indiana State Museum
Available for Viewing:
No
Category:
Three-dimensional Objects

Description

Abraham Lincoln's black wooden presentation cane or walking stick features an ornate gilt metal knob handle engraved with floral bouquets and baskets. "J.A. McClernand to Hon. A. Lincoln, June 1857" is engraved on the top of the knob. A gilt metal collar encircles the shaft directly below the knob and is engraved with the following: "Presented to the Rev. Jas. Smith, D.D., late pastor of the first Presbyterian Church, Springfield, Ills., by the family of the late President Lincoln, in the memoriam of the high esteem in which he was held by him and them as their pastor and their dear friend; 27th April 1868." A second gilt metal collar encircles the shaft five inches below the first and is engraved with the following: "Bequeathed by the Revd. Dr. Smith, U.S. Consul., Dundee, to the Right Hon. John Bright, M.P. in recognition to his tried friendship to the United States." A dull metal tip is fitted at the end of the shaft. This is said to be Lincoln's most famous cane and the one, according to contemporary news accounts, that Lincoln carried to his First Inauguration. It was presented to him in 1857 by J.A. McClernand, a fellow lawyer and Illinois Congressional representative. See "Lincoln Lore" numbers 47 and 538 for more information on the history of this gold-headed walking stick or cane. Part of The Lincoln Financial Foundation Collection, courtesy of the Indiana State Museum