Abraham Lincoln’s first Love – Ann Rutledge

Abraham Lincoln’s first and immortal love was Ann Rutledge; this relationship happened when Abraham Lincoln landed in New Salem to obtain his Law degree. Abraham Lincoln loved Ann very deeply and honestly. The love that continued the rest of his life in Lincoln’s heart.

Birth and Family background of Ann Rutledge

Ann Mayes Rutledge was born on Jan 7, 1813, near Henderson, Kentucky, she was the third of ten children born to Mary and James Rutledge.  In 1820, along with John M.Cameron. James Rutledge founded New Salem, Illinois, where they built a dam, both sides of the dam a Sawmill and Gristmill were constructed, As business increased, Rutledge and Camron decided to lay out a town and sell lots. By the next few years, New Salem became a fairly typical pioneer town.

Soon James Rutledge converted his home into a tavern and built an addition for guests. Ann Rutledge, apart from helping her mother doing household chores she took over the management of the tavern she was the only girl to attend Mentor Graham’s New Salem School

The Book in the Library of Congress

The cover of the actual grammar text used by Ann Rutledge and Abraham Lincoln with Ann’s signature was at the top of the book, found in the library of Congress.

Ann Rutledge – the attracting and divine beauty with lovable nature

Ann was pretty, intelligent, and friendly. Her cousin James Mccrady Rutledge said “ She was a beautiful girl and as bright as her beauty, she had auburn hair, blue eyes, stood five feet and three inches and weighed about 120 pounds. It was noted her character was very positive throughout the area, she was described as sweet and angelic, apparently lv by all who knew her.”A bigger than Life” Person a lot arises in one’s imagination.

Abraham Lincoln’s Boarding in New Salem

A new resident in tow, Abraham Lincoln boarded for a while Tavern. However Ann Rutledge engaged to a man named John Macnamar, who came to the west from Newyork he came to business and to acquire property, he needed to return to his parents and assured Ann to come back and marry her, he left on his trip in 1832, but as time passed, he did not return to New Salem.

Feelings of the two legends – Abraham Lincoln and Ann Rutledge

After Abraham Lincoln’s death in 1865, William Herdon interviewed former New Salem residents including surviving members of the Rutledge family. Although the details these people remembered varied some in particular. It seems a clear and definite relationship between Ann and Abraham Lincoln developed. Abraham Lincoln visited her often and it is possible they became unofficially engaged with the intent to marry after Abraham Lincoln obtained his law degree(which he was studying for while living in New Salem).

But in the summer of 1835, Ann Rutledge became ill with Typhoid fever, her condition worsened to the point where death beckoned, Ann called for Abraham Lincoln and made a private final visit to the dying girl.

Ann Rutledge Sister Nancy and Brother John expressed about Ann and Abraham

I can never forget how sad and broken-hearted Lincoln looked when he came out of the room from the last interview with Annie. No one knows what was said at that meeting, for they were alone together. – this was quoted by Ann’s sister Nancy

“ A better Man never lived” – quote about Abraham Lincoln by Ann’s brother John.

Shortly after that Ann passed away on 25th August 1835, at the age of 22. Reports about Abraham Lincoln’s reaction varied. Many thought Lincoln become terribly depressed, A few of the locals thought he became suicidal, after all this was the very first serious romance of Abraham lincoln.

The narration of Graham New Salem Schoolmaster about Ann and Abraham Lincoln

In 1865, meteor Graham, the former New Salem schoolmaster, said of Ann, “ I Know Miss. Ann Rutledge took sick while going to school, Abraham Lincoln and she both were studying at my house, Ann died about 1834, she was about 20 yrs old, blue eyes, large and expressive, fair complexion, sandy or light auburn hair not flaxen, about 5 feet and 4 inches, face rather round,, outlines beautiful- nervous element are dominated, she had good teeth, mouth well made, beautiful nervous chin, weight about 120 – 130 pounds, amiable, kind, exceptionally good scholar in all the common branches including grammar.

She was beloved by everybody and loved everyone, Abraham Lincoln and she was engaged, Lincoln told me so and she intimated to be the same. Abraham Lincoln told me he felt like committing suicide after Ann’s death, but I know him of God’s higher purpose, He told me he thought so too – somehow – couldn’t tell how. He said my remarks and others had after done him good.

Abraham Lincoln’s frequent visit to Ann’s graveyard

Ann was buried at the concord graveyard which was a country burying ground about 7 miles northwest of Salem/ Abraham Lincoln visited her gravesite frequently whenever he missed her. he felt very vacant in her absence, this made him visit her graveyard often.

Many years later Ann’s remains were moved, some people in nearby Petersburg felt her grave would help put the town “on the maps’ ‘ Her coffin was disinterred on May 15, 1890, the next morning it was reburied in Petersburg’s Oakland Cemetery. The announcement was then made that Abraham Lincoln’s first love was now interred in Petersburg. Roughly 200 people were buried there, Many of them knew Abraham and Ann personally, they knew the truthfulness of the courtship.

Meeting between President Abraham Lincoln and an old friend Issac Cogdal.

The real feeling for Ann Rutledge admitted by Abraham Lincoln to his friend

After the election as President, an old friend Issac Cogdal visited Abraham Lincoln, Cogdal was a quarryman and former New Salem resident, asked President Abraham Lincoln if he had fallen in love with Ann. According to Cogdal, Abraham Lincoln replied “It is True-true, Indeed I did. I loved the woman dearly and soundly, she was a handsome girl, and would have made a good loving wife. I did honestly and truly love the girl and think often of her now” these were the words spoken by President Abraham Lincoln to his friend Issac Cogdal.

The memorable words engraved on Ann’s Tombstone

Edgar Ann’s Master memorialized the Ann Rutledge Legend in an epitaph, his words are engraved on her tombstone at Oakland Cemetery.

                “Out of me unworthy and unknown

                 The Vibrations of Deathless Music!

                “With malice toward none, with charity for all

                 Out of me the forgiveness of millions towards millions

                 And the beneficent face of a nation

                 Shining with justice and truth

                 I am Ann Rutledge who sleeps beneath these weeds,

                 Beloved of Abraham Lincoln

                 Wedded to him, not through union,

                 But through separation

                 Bloom forever, O Republic,

                 From the dust of my bosom!”

Abraham Lincoln loved no one but Ann Rutledge and after her death never ceased to grieve for her. His memory of her both saddened and inspired him. As for his wife, Mary Todd Lincoln married him out of spite then devoted herself to Abraham Lincoln. 

Related Post :

Call 7092034231