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Abraham Lincoln Ledger

6th & Washington Streets
Springfield, Illinois

Lincoln in Springfield Photo Tour

Yes, Springfield has even preserved Abraham Lincoln's financial records. You may view the original Lincoln family account ledger with the Marine and Fire Insurance Company, which is now JPMorgan Chase Bank. Lincoln was a bank depositor from March 1, 1853 until his death on April 15, 1865.

When Lincoln opened his account with $310, the company had been in business nearly two years. Its improbable name in a landlocked town reflected how goods reached Springfield in the nineteenth century -- partly on the Illinois River. The company dropped marine insurance from its business after railroad shipping replaced waterway transportation, but retained the "marine" part of its name for many years.

© Abraham Lincoln Online
Today you can see the Lincoln ledger in the bank lobby preserved in a custom-built case decorated with bas relief sculpture on three sides. The case depicts Lincoln as his friends in central Illinois knew him: pioneer railsplitter, storekeeper and law student, and state representative.

The ledger book is opened to the Lincoln account, where "A. Lincoln" appears at the top, written by his banker, Robert Irwin. When Lincoln left Springfield as president-elect, Irwin made transactions as his local agent. After Lincoln's death the account continued in the name of David Davis, administrator of the Lincoln estate, until May 27, 1867.

You may view the ledger at the bank on the east side of the city square weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturdays from 9 a.m. to noon. The lobby is closed on Sundays and bank holidays. Call 217/525-9600.

Related Reading
Pratt, Harry E. The Personal Finances of Abraham Lincoln. Springfield: The Abraham Lincoln Association, 1943.

Related Link
Looking for Lincoln

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