Abraham Lincoln Rail Splitting and his Tools
| Series 606|
Lincoln's Broad-Axe and ox-yoke made by Lincoln, which is in the possession of the University of Illinois Abraham Lincoln as a Rail Splitter. In his autobiography of 1860, Lincoln, writing in the third person, says: "Here they built a log cabin...and made sufficient of rails to fence ten acres of ground...though these are far from being the first or only rails ever made by Abraham." When he reached his majority he left home, and one of the first pieces of work he did was "to split 400 rails for every yard of brown jeans dyed with white walnut bark that would be necessary to make him a pair of trousers." The Broadaxe is now owned by Mr. L. W. BIshop of Petersburg, having gotten it directly from one Mr. Irvin, who bought it from Lincoln. The Ox-Yoke was made by Lincoln when a young man, and is now in the possession of the University of Illinois (Champaign, Ill.). It is kept in an oak cabinet in the rotunda of the Library Building.