Surveyor’s Report, written and signed by Abraham Lincoln
August 26, 1839
Image courtesy of David H. Leroy, Boise, Idaho.
Lincoln’s Surveying Tools Staff and Project News
See NEWS (on page 4)
The surveying equipment (pictured at left)
that Lincoln used during his time as a surveyor
in New Salem, Illinois, is on display in the museum
at Lincoln’s New Salem Historic Site. The equipment
includes a Rittenhouse compass, six-foot staff,
chains, and the saddlebags used to carry the
instruments. The instruments were manufactured in
Pennsylvania in the late 1700s.
In 1834, the Sangamon County Circuit Court
ordered the auction of Lincoln’s tools to cover a debt
resulting from the failure of the Lincoln & Berry store
in New Salem. A friend purchased them at auction
and returned them to Lincoln, who continued to work
as a surveyor until he moved to Springfield to become
In September, Assistant Editor Chris Schnell spoke
to an Elderhostel group about Stephen A.
Douglas’s early life. During the annual meeting of
the group in Springfield, he discussed Douglas’s legal
career, comparing and contrasting it to Lincoln’s
Director Daniel Stowell gave a presentation
about Lincoln’s famous “Almanac Trial” to a group
of volunteers at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential
Library and Museum.
Daniel Stowell also participated in a
roundtable entitled “Lincoln, Grant, and Logan: A
Discussion,” sponsored by the John A. Logan
Museum in Murphysboro, Illinois. John Y. Simon,
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