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John Hay to John Nicolay, August 7, 1863

John Milton Hay, c 1860, detail
During August 1863, Abraham Lincoln was essentially left alone in the White House. Congress was out of session, senior aide John Nicolay was on a trip out west, and even the First Family was traveling. Lincoln's other top assistant John Hay updated Nicolay with a chatty letter on August 7, 1863 that described the less distracted president as "in fine whack." Hay also noted Lincoln's "tyrannous authority" over his Cabinet and claimed that "the hand of God" had placed him in the presidency. (By Brenna McKelvey)


How to Cite This Page: "John Hay to John Nicolay, August 7, 1863," House Divided: The Civil War Research Engine at Dickinson College,