The Fox River
As heard on the Good Stuff with Jim Thompson

When Abraham Lincoln was on his way to Washington to be inaugurated, he spent some time in New York with Horace Greeley and told him an anecdote that was meant to be an answer to the question everybody was asking him: Are we really going to have civil war?

In his circuit-riding days, Lincoln and his companions, riding to the next session of court, had crossed many rivers. But the Fox River was still ahead of them; and they said one to another, "If these streams gives us so much trouble, how shall we get over the Fox River?

"When darkness fell, they stopped for the night at a log tavern, where they fell in with the Methodist presiding elder of the district, who rode through the country in all kinds of weather and knew all about the Fox River. They gathered around him and asked him about the present state of the river.

"Oh, yes," replied the circuit rider, "I know all the Fox River. I have crossed it often and understand it well. But I have one fixed rule with regard to the Fox River—I never cross it till I reach it."