1860 · New York
"Horace Greeley had rushed out the speech in pamphlet form as 'Tribune Tract' Number 4, under the headline: National Politics. Speech of Abraham Lincoln, of Illinois, Delivered at the Cooper Institute, Monday Feb. 27, 1860. The pamphlet was ready March 6, while Lincoln was still traveling through Connecticut. When he returned to New York, he found it already available to the public.
"Greeley marketed the eleven-page Tribune edition aggressively... As a bonus, the publication included Wisconsin Republican senator James Doolittle's February 24 speech attaching 'the new doctrine of judicial infallibility,' as did Lincoln's address at Cooper Union just three days later, and also, like Cooper Union, railing agains 'the headstrong zeal pursued by the other party to force slavery into Territories'...
"It was as if Republicans were now speaking with one voice: identifying with the founders, attacking the Dred Scott decision, rebuking John Brown, and drawing their own 'dividing line' on slavery extension. Lincoln did not say it alone; but he said it best... 'Mr. Lincoln's is probably the most systematic and complete defense yet made of the Republican position with regard to Slavery,' the Tribune declared in its initial advertisement for the reprints. 'We believe no speech has yet been made better calculated to win the intelligent minds over to our standard. Will the friends of the Cause everywhere aid us to circulate it?'
"The answer was yes. The Tribune Tract edition proved enormously popular, going through at least five additional editions... [Lincoln's] New York oration was enjoying a new and sustained life in pamphlet form, and was being purchased, individually, and in bulk alike, by admirers and groups across the North.
"The Cooper Union address tested whether Lincoln's appeal could extend from the podium to the page, and from the rollicking campaigns of the rural West to the urban East... Cooper Union held the promise of transforming Lincoln from a regional phenomenon to a national figure. Lincoln knew it, and rose to the occasion." (Harold Holzer, Lincoln at the Copper Union: The Speech That Made Abraham Lincoln President).
New York: New York Tribune, Tribune Tracts, No. 4, 1860. Octavo, original wrappers; custom box. Lincoln's speech comprises pages 1-11 (out of a total of 16 pages). With New York Tribune ads and subscription terms on rear wrapper. Only a spot of soiling in the bottom margin of the rear wrapper (creeping lightly into preceding leaves). A beautiful copy in a remarkable state of preservation. RARE. (Inventory #: 2444)