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However, he did handle some significant criminal cases.For instance, Ward Hill Illinois Heritage 5 Lamon engaged him to prosecute the case of People v. Lincoln has been so well known personally by so large a number of our people, and has so long been regarded as one of our own citizens, that his death seems to fall with the most crushing severity upon our inhabitants." Daily Pantagraph (Bloomington), April 18, 1865.One can argue that no part of the Lincoln story has been as neglected as that of the Eighth Judicial Circuit and its role in the development of the sixteenth president's intertwined legal and political careers.Andrew Wyant, a murder case where Lincoln's opponent, the talented Bloomington lawyer Leonard Swett, successfully raised the defense of not guilty by reason of insanity.Lamon, a close friend of Lincoln's, was the State's Attorney for the entire Circuit.With the exception of his two-year term in Congress, he attended almost every biannual (spring and fall) court session.Over those years, he was a fixture in Bloomington, coming to know its citizens and becoming a part of its fabric and an agent of its growth.
It took approximately eleven weeks to complete the full circle.
Lincoln spent almost as much time out on the Circuit as he did in Springfield.
Each county seat has its own unique Lincoln chapter, and each had men who played important roles in Lincoln's advance to the White House: Samuel Park of Lincoln; Clifton Moore and Lawrence Weldon of Clinton; Henry C. Cunningham ol "the Urbana's;" William Fithian of Danville; Anthony Thornton and Samuel Moulton of Shelbyville; and Richard J.
The Circuit at its largest consisted of fourteen counties encompassing an area of 10,000 square miles, twice the size of Connecticut.
It extended from the Indiana line to the Illinois River, from Metamora to Shelbyville.