Linder, Usher F.

b. March 20, 1809, in Elizabethtown, Kentucky; d. June 5, 1876, in Chicago, Illinois. Linder moved to Illinois in 1835 and settled in Coles County, where he first met Abraham Lincoln later that same year. Shortly thereafter, Linder was admitted to the bar and served one term as attorney general. Originally a Democrat, Linder became a Whig in 1838 but returned to the Democratic party in the 1850s. He was elected to the state legislature in 1836, 1846, and 1850. During his first term in the legislature, Linder opposed efforts by Lincoln and others to relocate the state capital to Springfield. Linder practiced law from 1838 to 1860. In 1847, he employed Lincoln’s services in the famous In re Bryant et al. slave case. Linder was strongly anti-abolitionist and opposed Lincoln’ s nomination to the presidency in 1860. Later in life, Linder began writing his reminiscences, which were published posthumously in 1879.
Frederick B. Crossley, Courts and Lawyers of Illinois (Chicago: American Historical Society, 1916), 1:206-08; David Herbert Donald, Lincoln (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1995), 62, 103; John J. Duff, A. Lincoln: Prairie Lawyer (New York: Bramhall House, 1960), 130-47; Mark E. Neely Jr., The Abraham Lincoln Encyclopedia (New York: McGraw Hill, 1982), 193; John Palmer, ed., The Bench and Bar of Illinois: Historical and Reminiscent (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1899), 1:189; Usher F. Linder, Reminiscences of the Early Bench and Bar of Illinois (Chicago: The Chicago Legal News Company, 1879), 21, 35, 37, 395; Albert A. Woldman, Lawyer Lincoln (Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1936).