To Robert Anderson

Col. Robert Anderson Washington, D.C.
My dear Sir May 14. 1861

Some time ago, and before it was arranged for you to go West, as now, the question was upon us how arms sent to Cincinnati for Kentuckians, could surely be put in the hands of friends, and not of enemies; and, for this purpose, and without their knowledge, Messrs Crittenden, Guthrie, and Joshua F. Speed, bearer of this, or any one of them, were designated to distribute the arms, in their discretion. After you left here last week it occurred to us that you could perform this service as safely, and perhaps more expeditiously, by reason that you will be on the spot, and will not have to wait for the co-operation of any one; and a direction was accordingly sent to the parties forwarding the arms to Cincinnati. It now occurs further that the kind assitance of these gentlemen may still be valuable to you in this, and perhaps other matters; and when it shall so appear to you it is hoped you will avail yourself of it. Mr. Speed, though less known to the world than the other gentlemen, is far better known to me than either of them; and I have the utmost confidence in his loyalty and integrity, and also in his judgment on any subject which he professes to understand. I think you will find him a most agreeable companion, and at the same time a most valuable assistant in our common cause. Yours very truly

A. LINCOLN

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