That Abe Lincoln? He could make a cat laugh…

From William Eleazar Barton’s The Soul of Abraham Lincoln (NY: George H. Doran, 1920).

Lincoln’s cat, Tabby (the generic name for brindled lady kitties in the 19c), was the first cat to live in the White House. 

Apparently, his wife Mary was also cat-like—and canine-like—in her own (horrible, horrible) way. Controlling and quick-tempered, she was described as a “tigress,” a “female wild cat,” a “Hell-Cat,” and a “she-wolf.” She was even compared to Satan. Of course, I consider these to all be slanders against the cat and wolf! Whether it was also slander against Mary—would she have been called such things if she were a white man?—I don’t know.

I haven’t, after all, seen the movie.  

From Michael Burlingame’s Abraham Lincoln: A Life, vol. 1 (Johns Hopkins Press, 2008).

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