Illness Hits the White House

Lincoln Family, 1861

Wednesday, March 20, 1861

Willie and Thomas “Tad” Lincoln are ill. Presidential aide John G. Nicolay writes: “Excepting the fact that the two little boys [Willie and Tad Lincoln] have the measles, every body about the White House is in good health, notwithstanding the fact that some of us have work and annoyance enough to make almost anybody sick. There is consolation in the fact however that this rush cannot last many weeks longer and that then we will enjoy our leisure all the better…”

Things continue to be unwell between Mary Todd Lincoln and Julia Jayne Trumbull, the wife of Illinois Senator Lyman Trumbull. Their friendship dissolved in 1855 when Trumbull defeated Lincoln for a Senate seat. Elizabeth Todd Grimsley, Mary’s cousin, writes from the White House: To-morrow night Mary has another reception, the last of the season. I presume it will be pleasant as there will not be so much of a crowd. The children are very much better and I think will soon be quite well. I have not seen Mrs. Trumbull — she sent me word she expected me to call, as that is etiquette, but I concluded in the present state of affairs, that as Mrs. Crittenden, McLean, Foster & various other senators wives had called specially to see me that Mrs. Trumbull might waive ceremony also, if she wished to see me. Trumbull is exceedingly unpopular here and particularly so with the conservative portion of the Republican party.”

Published in: on March 19, 2011 at 11:52 am  Leave a Comment  
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