Middletown's Lincoln

Middletown's Lincoln (HMRNG)

Location: Middletown, IL 62666 Logan County
Country: United States of America

N 40° 5.946', W 89° 35.458'

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Middletown was founded in 1832 by Hiram S. Allen. Middletown was an excellent business location because stagecoaches already ran through the area, going from Springfield to Galena, carrying both passengers and mail. The first lot to be sold in the original town survey of Middletown has an historical significance. It was transferred to Hawkins Taylor on June 4, 1833 and none other than Abraham Lincoln witnessed the deed. Dr. John Deskins constructed Middletown's famous stagecoach inn and tavern in 1837, on the northwest corner of the public square. On January 5, 1838, George Dunlap purchased the property and became the proprietor of an elegant stagecoach house constructed in the federal style. A nine-room stagecoach inn was much larger than the typical inn of the day. However, Middletown very early laid out two racetracks: one circular and one in a straight line. Twice each year horse racing was held there for two weeks at a time, attracting people from all over the Midwest.

The first time Lincoln would have seen George Dunlap's stagecoach inn and tavern was in April 1838 as he traveled from Springfield to attend the Taswell Circuit Court at Tremont. Lincoln would have stopped at the Dunlap House many times while passing through Middletown as he traveled the Eighth Judicial Circuit. Lincoln stopped at the Inn on his way to attend the Rivers and Harbor Convention in July 1847 as well as on October 10, 1848 accompanied by his family.

In 1833, Abraham Lincoln became Deputy Surveyor in Sangamon County and was frequently working in the Middletown area. On July 2, 1834, Lincoln started a survey beginning at Musick's Ferry, a mile north of Middletown on Salt Creek. Lincoln and his crew surveyed south to Middletown and along the side of the town's public square continuing south of Middletown and then on to Jacksonville. In June 1837 a noted visitor arrived by stage in Middletown, Senator Daniel Webster, who was touring the Midwest. Tradition relates that as the coach was leaving Middletown, it experienced mechanical problems. During the delay the townsfolk recognized Webster and crowded around to see the great orator. Webster gave a speech to the gathering around him. Lincoln and Webster became close political friends while serving in Congress.

Series This marker is part of the Illinois: Looking for Lincoln series
Year Placed2010
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Wednesday, September 10th, 2014 at 2:34pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)16T E 279142 N 4441974
Decimal Degrees40.09910000, -89.59096667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 40° 5.946', W 89° 35.458'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds40° 5' 56.76" N, 89° 35' 27.48" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)217
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 241 Co Hwy 27, Middletown IL 62666, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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