Submitted by Tamara Kincaide
JAMES E STEPHENS
MAY 28 1915
W. E. WILLIAMS
In answer to you inquiry I will say that I was born on the 19th day of March 1858 in Skelton township, Warrick County Indiana on the Corydon and Boonville road about three miles west of the town of Gentryville, Spencer County and excepting two years have lived in and in knowing distance of this community all my life. My father and mother after I was married lived and died in Gentryville and are buried there.
My eldest sister married JACOB OSKINS who was the son of WILLIAM OSKINS who was one of the early settlers of that community and who was one of the neighbors of the LINCOLNS when they lived in that community. After JACOB OSKINS married my sister he moved onto part of the farm of JOHN ROMINE who was also one of the neighbor to and was well acquainted with the LINCOLNS when they lived in that community. During the time that said JACOB OSKINS lived on this said farm about one fourth mile west of Pigeon Baptist Church I worked for him and during that time I became acquainted with JOHN ROMINE he being at that time quite a old man and also WILLIAM OSKINS being a aged man at that time.
He would come to the home of his son JACOB OSKINS and MR. JOHN ROMINE would also come and these two old men would talk over as they called it old times and would tell of the early settlers and many things that were very interesting to me being then but a boy.
At that time JACOB OSKINS lived about a mile south of the old LINCOLN farm where LINCOLN CITY now stands and I visited the old farm and have been in the old LINCOLN house quite a number of times while it was yet standing there. I have seen a great many strangers who came there to see the old house and they would frequently take some memento of relic from the same. I have seen them take a hatchet and cut chips from the logs to make into toothpicks so as to have some relics from the Lincoln house. During conversation between JOHN ROMINE and WILLIAM OSKINS I remember of hearing JOHN ROMINE tell of how slow LINCOLN was that when they started to move to Illinois the first day they got down as far as EDMUND PHILLIP'S for they were moving with oxen and the road very bad, He said the reason he knew this was that THOMAS LINCOLN owned a certain tract of land 80 acres which he wanted to sell or trade for a good horse and after the LINCOLNS had started he followed them caught up with them at EDMUND PHILLIPS and there JOHN ROMINE said he traded to LINCOLN a young horse for the said 80 acres of land and received a deed for same and returned home. He said that LINCOLN said he was going by way of Boonville I heard these two old men tell of this and many other things about LINCOLN quite often.
Hoping this answers your inquiry
JAMES E STEPHENS
Published Boonville Standard JUNE 11 1915
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