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Tuesday, January 5, 1858.+-

Springfield, IL.

Lincoln writes to Robert A. Kinzie of Chicago regarding the U.S. Circuit Court case of Johnston v. Jones and Marsh, a case more familiarly known as the "Sandbar Case." Plaintiff William S. Johnston is suing William Jones and Sylvester Marsh in a dispute over property rights involving Chicago's lakeshore. The dispute came about as a result of action that the federal government took in 1833 in an attempt to straighten the Chicago River's course. The government cut a channel across the litigants' lots, an action which resulted in sand washing up along the shoreline and over time creating new land nearly 1,200 feet wide. Prior to Lincoln's involvement in the case as one of the attorneys for defendant William Jones, the U.S. Circuit Court heard the case and ruled in favor of the plaintiff. Jones appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, which reversed the lower Court's decision. In his letter to Kinzie, Lincoln explains that he has "been engaged, as an attorney on Jones' side." Lincoln seeks some background information from Kinzie, who once owned the disputed property and who "laid out the addition" now in question. Lincoln writes, "I suppose you are aware that Johnson and Jones are at law about a portion of the made land attached to your addition to Chicago & and on the North side of the Harbor... and if you have no objection to do so, I shall be obliged if you will answer the following questions." U.S. Circuit Court, District of Illinois Transcript, filed 4 December 1854, Jones v. Marsh & Johnston, Record Group 267, REC1, case file 3201, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, DC; Abraham Lincoln to Robert A. Kinzie, 5 January 1858, CW, 2:430-31.

In the Illinois Supreme Court, Lincoln files an assignment of errors in the appeal case of McDaniel et al. v. Correll et al. Lincoln wrote the document and signed it "Conkling & Lincoln & Herndon." Lincoln & Herndon and attorney James C. Conkling represent the appellants who seek to overturn the decision of the Sangamon County Circuit Court. The lower court ruled in favor of the appellees in a dispute among the heirs of William McDaniel. Assignment of Errors, filed 5 January 1858, McDaniel et al. v. Correll et al., Herndon-Weik Collection, Library of Congress, Washington, DC.