Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Abraham Lincoln Note Signed "A Lincoln." One partial page, 3" x 5.25", no place; May 18, 1864. Lincoln's short note reads in full: "I have issued no proclamations lately. I signed a very modest paper last night for the Sec of War, about drafting 300,000 - in July as I remember; but the document now rampant at New York is a forgery."

    Below the note is an additional notation in an unknown hand that reads, "The above note was written on the back of a telegram addressed to Secretary Chase asking whether the Proclamation which appeared in certain N.Y. papers on the 18th of June was or was not genuine. J.W.J." On verso is a partial page of the telegram, Boston; May 18, 1864, addressed to Secretary of the Treasury Salmon P. Chase.

    It appears as if Lincoln's order for the drafting of 300,000 men was never officially issued, as it cannot be found in any Official Records. This may have been due to public backlash after the forgery that Lincoln references. This was also not the first time that drafting in New York had caused controversy. On July 13, 1863, ten days after the signing of the July 3, 1863 New York draft proclamation, rioting and civil unrest broke out in the city. The riots lasted three days, involving approximately 50,000 people, and causing untold damage to the city. Troops had to be rushed from Gettysburg to quell the violence.

    Condition: Light toning and soiling at the edges. The left edge is slightly rough due to being cut from the larger telegraph document. A few small spots of ink smudging.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2019
    26th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 891

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    25% on the first $300,000 (minimum $49), plus 20% of any amount between $300,000 and $3,000,000, plus 12.5% of any amount over $3,000,000 per lot.

    Sold on Oct 26, 2019 for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2021 September 26 Autumn Luxury Accessories Signature Auction - Dallas.

    Learn about consigning with us

    Heritage has gone above and beyond my expectations in handling all of my transactions in a thoroughly professional manner. I would not hesitate to recommend them to anyone worldwide for the exemplary auction and valuation services they provide.
    Richard H.,
    Corsicana, TX
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search