Honest Abe Was Gay
BY Charles Kaiser
April 28 2009 12:00 AM ET
The argument that
necessity was the mother of Lincoln's sleeping arrangements
with Speed breaks down altogether as Tripp amasses evidence
that Lincoln also shared his bed with at least three other men.
A contemporary writes that A.Y. Ellis had "come up from
Springfield and taken quite a fancy to Lincoln. The two slept
together and Lincoln frequently assisted him in the
store." Another young friend, Billy Greene, remarked on
Lincoln's "perfect" thighs, and they also shared
And although it
isn't clear whether they ever slept together, Lincoln was
clearly besotted with one Elmer Ellsworth, whose friend John
Cook writes to him, "[Lincoln] has taken in you a greater
interest than I ever knew him to manifest in any one
before," while another witness reported, "Lincoln
watched the two-hour drill with kindling eyes. He too centered
his attention upon the boyish-looking commander. Afterwards he
said of Colonel Ellsworth, 'He is the greatest little man I
ever met.'" Ellsworth became the first casualty of the
Civil War, and when the president learned of his death, he
Tripp has also
unearthed this diary entry by a Washington socialite, from
November 16, 1862: "Tish says, 'there is a soldier
here devoted to the President, drives with him, and when Mrs.
L. is not home, sleeps with him.' What stuff!" And he
provides independent confirmation that the soldier, David V.
Derickson, slept with the president--and that Lincoln even
loaned him his nightshirt.