Lydia Sayer Hasbrouck to Abraham Lincoln, March 8, 1861

    Source citation
    Lydia Sayer Hasbrouck to Abraham Lincoln, March 8, 1861, Middletown, NY, Abraham Lincoln Papers at the Library of Congress,
    Author (from)
    Hasbrouck, Lydia Sayer
    Date Certainty
    Transcribed by the Lincoln Studies Center, Knox College, Galesburg, IL
    Adapted by Don Sailer, Dickinson College
    Transcription date
    The following transcript has been adapted from the Abraham Lincoln Papers at the Library of Congress.

    Middletown, N. Y.

    Mch 8th 1861

    President Lincoln

    May I a wife, mother tax payer and hard working woman of America be heard, when I ask from you, a man in power a juster recognition of woman's individuality than has hitherto been shown her in the distribution of such offices as she is well fitted to fill? It is useless for me to remind an intelagent citizen of our progressive west of the growing spirit of discontent among the hard working, unrepresented tax paying women of America in relation to the manner in which men arrogate to themselves all power offices &c &c. The power is now yours to heal to some extent this growing spirit of discontent and wounded selfhood by giving to the working inteligent tax paying women who have (indirectly helped to raise you to power, a small share in the many offices at your disposal; It will be only an act of simple justice which thousands of women trust you will honor your administration by performing Thousands of Post and other offices might be filled in this way by worthy women in lieu of making them pass for able bodied men to such who are too lazy to split rails or plow.

    I have consulted none of your political friends here save my husband as to the propriety of offering myself as an applicant for the P. M. department here-- I know I have acted unusual but did not care to imitate the dozen or more corner lounging polititians circulating papers for the place -- my claims are full as good as theirs while I would refer you to Hon Wm H. Seward & Hon C. H. Van Wyck as to my probible abilities for the place duties -- though I trust you will alone consult President Lincoln the choise of the people as to the propriety of giving women at least one recognition of selfhood in old Orange, though I hope thousands of women will thus be recognised through the land, not merely in the by way and unprofitable offices which men refuse to accept but in the places of trust and good pay--

    I will not enlarge on woman's "rights" and "wrongs" but will trust to you to right some of the injustice meted out to her at present

    From Mrs Lydia Sayer Hasbrouck M. D.

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