Lincoln was always ready to help any man, woman, child or animal. He was naturally kindhearted, and "possessed in an extraordinary degree the power of entering into the interest of others, a power found only in reflective, unselfish natures." He loved his friends and sympathized with them in their troubles. He was anxious always to do his share in making their labors day after day as light as possible.
Thus we are told by his neighbors (biography by Mr. Herndon and others) that he cared for the children while on a visit to a friendís house; gave up his own bed in the tavern where he was boarding when the house was full, and slept on the counter; helped farmers pull out the wheel of their wagon when it got stuck in the mud; chopped wood for the windows; rocked the cradle while the woman of the house where he was staying was busy getting the meal and otherwise made himself useful. No wonder there was not a housewife in all New Salem who would not gladly "put on a plate" for Abe Lincoln, or who would not darn or mend for him whenever he needed such services. It was the "spontaneous, unobtrusive helpfulness of the manís nature which endeared him to everybody."