Fire destroyed most of the court records pertaining to attorney Abraham Lincoln's Mt. Pulaski legal practice. The records perished when the recently-completed Logan County courthouse in Lincoln burned down in 1857. Most of what is known of Lincoln's legal practice in Mt. Pulaski comes from Illinois State Supreme Court records in Springfield—-which usually include information about trial proceedings that transpired here in the courtroom before the cases were appealed. In two of Lincoln's more important local cases he opposed his former law partners Stephen T. Logan and John Todd Stuart. When Mt. Pulaski replaced Postville as the county seat. Postville land owners hired Logan and Stuart to recover the value of land they had donated to the county. Lincoln successfully defended the county by demonstrating that Postville men had been fairly compensated. A few years later, when the new city of Lincoln became county seat, mt. Pulaski hired Lincoln's old partners and sued the county to prevent the change. Lincoln defended the county and won again.
The "Horological Cradle" case was one of the stranger cases that lawyer Lincoln handled in Mt. Pulaski. At issue was a land swap for a patent on a mechanical cradle touted by Springfield newspapers as "a wonder of the age," that "no mother should be without." Once wound up, the cradle rocked itself freeing mothers to pursue other chores. Lincoln sued the local "inventor" on behalf of local patent purchasers who discovered that the patent covered only the cradle's ornamentation, not its mechanical design. Lincoln thoroughly enjoyed demonstrating the mechanics of the cradle to a courtroom of amused onlookers. But the contraption reportedly confused Judge David Davis, who supposedly asked how one could stop it from rocking. It's like some of the glib talkers you and I know, Judge," Lincoln explained, it won't stop until it runs down."
|Series||This marker is part of the Illinois: Looking for Lincoln series|
|Marker Condition||No reports yet|
|Date Added||Thursday, September 25th, 2014 at 2:52am PDT -07:00|
|UTM (WGS84 Datum)||16T E 304951 N 4431268|
|Decimal Degrees||40.00910000, -89.28521667|
|Degrees and Decimal Minutes||N 40° 0.546', W 89° 17.113'|
|Degrees, Minutes and Seconds||40° 0' 32.76" N, 89° 17' 6.78" W|
|Driving Directions||Google Maps|
|Closest Postal Address||At or near 100-198 S Washington St, Mt Pulaski IL 62548, US|
|Alternative Maps||Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap|
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