LINCOLN, ABRAHAM, President. Autograph note signed ("A. Lincoln") as President, to Brigadier General James Wolfe Ripley, U.S. Army Chief of Ordnance, 17 August 1861. One page, four lines plus date-line and signature on a small oblong card, 52 x 84 mm. (2 x 5/16 in.), neatly laid down on a mat.
LINCOLN RECOMMENDS A NEW GUN BE TESTED BY THE ARMY
An interesting example of Lincoln's short notes, written during his daily public interviews, referring the bearer to the appropriate government official. "Will Gen. Ripley please have the gun herewith presented by Mr. Gallaher, examined, & tested?..."
Apparently Gallaher, who is otherwise unidentified, had shown Lincoln a gun of an unknown nature in the hopes that it might be tested for possible use by the U.S. Army. Lincoln obligingly wrote the present card, which Gallaher probably carried with him to present to General Ripley, Chief of Ordnance. The outcome of the tests, if any were ultimately performed, is unknown. It was Lincoln's frequent habit to jot notes on small cards or to add endorsements to letters forwarded by, or involving Ripley, including requests for appointments. Basler published a number of these. Lincoln took a more than passing interest in new guns, cannon and other types of ordnance. The best-known instance occurred on 7 August 1862, when the President and John A. Dahlgren (inventor of the Dahlgren naval cannon) attended a successful test of the so-called "Rafael Repeater," which Lincoln recommended to Secretary of War Edward M. Stanton the following day (see Basler V:365). The Rafael Repeater, like Gallaher's weapon, whatever its nature, was apparently never adopted by the Army Ordnance Bureau.
Apparently unpublished, not in Basler or Supplements.