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Rail Splinters

Portrait of Lincoln Legal Associate Unearthed

December 28, 2019

We picture a recently discovered daguerreotype portrait. The label identifies the subject as David P. Campbell, a “friend of Abe Lincoln”. 

Campbell was a “State Attorney” in Illinois and worked on the famous Eighth Judicial Circuit. Lincoln was co-counsel with Campbell on several cases tried in that venue, wrote up indictments at Campbell’s behest, and briefly served as “pro tem” State Attorney during his absence. Lincoln  had no ambitions for higher office in the legal profession and never sought to be a judge or Attorney General. 

Although identification labels such as this cannot be relied on without question, we feel quite confident that the person portrayed is indeed Campbell and, as far as we know, it is the only known portrait of this Lincoln associate.