Best Lincoln Stories Tersely Told
by J. E. Gallaher
Pub. in 1898


How Lincoln Became Known as
"Honest Abe."


As a grocery clerk at New Salem Lincoln was scrupulously honest. This trait of his soon became known, but the two following incidents are particularly responsible for the appellation of "Honest Abe," given him and by which he has been so familiarly known. He once took six and a quarter cents too much from a customer. He did not say to himself, "never mind such little things," but walked three miles that evening, after closing his store, to return the money. On another occasion he weighed out a half-pound of tea, as he supposed, it being night when he did so, and that having been the last thing he sold in the store before going home. On entering in the morning he discovered a four-ounce weight on the scales. He saw his mistake, and shutting up shop, hurried off to deliver the remainder of the tea. These acts of his, as well as his thorough honesty in other respects, soon gained for him the now famous title of "Honest Abe."

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