For more than 25 years, the Illinois State Historical Library and its successor, the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library, have supported a long-term effort to locate, image, annotate, and publish comprehensive collections of papers relating to Abraham Lincoln’s legal, political, and presidential career.
Beginning in 1985, staff first focused on Lincoln’s legal career, publishing in 2000 The Law Practice of Abraham Lincoln, a 96,000-document collection of court records and correspondence from more than 5,600 cases and office practice matters. With the completion of the Legal papers, the staff turned to compiling and editing two additional series of papers. The first will encompass Lincoln’s life until his inauguration in March 1861, the second series his years as president.
The Papers of Abraham Lincoln receives additional support from the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, which administers the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, and by project cosponsors, the Abraham Lincoln Association and the Center for State Policy at the University of Illinois Springfield.