Young lawyer A. Lincoln was riding the 8th
Judicial Circuit, covering 420 miles, when
he tried what has been coined the
"Cast Iron Tombstone Trial" in the Mount
Judge David Davis of McLean County
presided over the court hearings.
President Abraham Lincoln later appointed
Judge Davis to the Supreme Court in 1862.
This particular case involves the strange
case between Henry K. Flinchbaugh of
Lancaster County, Pa., and Reuben Miller
from Chicago. They owned the patent rights
for a cast-iron tombstone. The rights were
apparently sold to Nathaniel M. Whitaker of
These tombstones still exist in several
cemeteries around Logan County.
The first Logan County Courthouse was in
Postville, on the site where the replica now
stands on Fifth Street in Lincoln. A new
courthouse was built in Mount Pulaski, and
court business was conducted there from the
years 1848 to 1855. That courthouse has been
maintained and is the site of the
top of second column]
When the city of Lincoln became the
county seat, a new courthouse was built on
the site where the current (second)
courthouse stands today.
Trials and numerous court documents were
lost in an 1857 fire at the Lincoln
courthouse. Due to the loss of information
in that fire, this case is one of only four
known trials that were held in the Mount
The premiere production will be presented
in the Mount Pulaski Courthouse. The
dramatization will take place on Friday at
7:30 p.m. and on Saturday at 11 a.m. and
again at 4 p.m., following the parade at the
Mount Pulaski Fall Festival.
The cast will be in period costumes.
Donations will be accepted at the
entrance of the courthouse. All proceeds
will benefit the Mount Pulaski Abraham
Lincoln Bicentennial Committee to plan
activities and events leading up to A.
Lincoln's 200th birthday in 2009 for a "to
life" trial re-enactment.
[News release; LDN]