Home --› Browse the Shop --› Abraham Lincoln --› Campaigns, Elections, Inaugurations --› Abraham Lincoln Inaugural Train Invitation and Pass

Abraham Lincoln Inaugural Train Invitation and Pass

A Trip on the Inaugural Train from Columbus to Pittsburgh




Ephemera related to Abraham Lincoln’s Inaugural Train, a pass and an invitation to ride along on the journey.

Though the recipient is not named (nor is there any place to be named), that person was “respectfully invited to participate in the courtesis ( sic ) extend to the President.”

Signed by W(illiam) S. Wood. Before the Civil War, Wood had been a hotel manager and a railroad official.

At the suggestion of New York Senator William H. Seward and Congressman Erastus Corning, Wood was chosen to supervise the President-elect’s train trip from Springfield to Washington in February 1861. He then became the Interim Commissioner of Public Buildings at the beginning of the Lincoln Administration.

Wood was no stranger to scandal. it was he who contracted with American Bank Note Company to produce these tickets (and other engravings given to Lincoln as he boarded the train in Springfield). He did not giving another company a chance to compete.

Second, Wood and Mary Lincoln became the fodder of gossip, when the two took trips together to New York in order to purchase furnishings for the Executive Mansion. Rumors circulated that there might be an affair. These rumors anonymously reached the President and it was related by Speaker of the House Schuyler Colfax that the two “scarcely spoke for several days.”  Wood resigned under fire.

Ward Hill Lamon defended Mrs. Lincoln from such attacks: “She was a thoroughly good woman; she was just imprudent.”

The very first we have seen! Truly Rare! We have not before handled or even found on the open market one of these inaugural train tickets. To be additionally signed by Wood opens up a wonderful association as well.

 (Lincoln Inaugural Train 1861) SPECIAL TRAIN… Printed Invitation to accompany “Hon. Abraham Lincoln, President” on the inaugural train from Columbus to Pittsburg (sic) on the 14th Feby. 1861,” all on the Pittsburg,(sic) Columbus and Cincinnati Rail Road.” 4-3/4 x 3 inches. On the verso is a large, green anti-forgery engraving and the name of the printer and engraver of this ticket: “American Bank Note Co., New York”

Watch Take a Break–With History: