To Lauren Ford

14 February 1866


[MS in Finney Papers, Supplement #156.]


Finney received a further letter from Lauren Ford as follows (Finney Papers, Supplement #155):


New York. Feby 10. 1866

No 128 Broadway


Revnd C. G. Finney,

Dr Sir

Your letter of the 7th Inst in

answer to mine of the 2nd Inst is before me. I regret

to hear of your illness and hope that this note

will find you convalescent.

In compliance with your suggestion

I have prepared duplicate copies of our agreement

respecting the Judgment against Samuel Wise and

send them with this note - I have signed both

copies - If, upon examination, you find them

correct, please sign one of the papers and return

it to me. Sign above my name.


yours &c

L. Ford



State of New York, Supreme Court


Charles G. Finney } Lauren Ford, Off Atty on the Record,

agt } Judgment, docketed in the office of the

Samuel Wise } Clerk of King's County, Novr. 19. 1863



Damages . . . . . . $2106..63

Costs 156..58

Whole amount of Judgment . . . $2263.21


Transcript of Judgment filed, & Judgment docketed in the office of the Clerk of the County of New York, Novr. 28. 1863 --



In consideration of the sum of one Dollar, paid to me by Lauren Ford, Counsellor of the City of Brooklyn, I, Charles G. Finney, of Oberlin, in the State of Ohio, the Plaintiff in the above described Judgment do hereby assign & transfer, to the said Lauren Ford, the said Judgment, and all my interest in the same, and I do hereby give to the said Assignee, full power & authority to adopt & pursue all such proceedings & measures, for the collection of the amount of said Judgment, as shall, from time to time, be considered proper by my said Assignee.

This assignment is made upon the following conditions - All proceedings hereafter to be taken by the said Assignee, for the collection of the money due upon said Judgment, these be taken at the expense & risk of said Assignee, & at such times as he may think proper, and I am not, in any case, to be subjected to any costs, incident to such proceedings, and the said Assignee, by the conditions of this assignment, hereby agrees to indemnify me, and save me harmless from all such costs.

The said Lauren Ford, in consideration of the aforesaid Assignment, hereby agrees that he will forever hereafter indemnify and save harmless, the said Charles G. Finney & his legal representatives, from & against all costs & charges that may hereafter be incurred in any


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proceedings to collect the amount of said Judgment. The said assignee hereby agrees that he will, at all times hereafter, upon the written request of the said Plaintiff or of his legal representatives give to him or them, a full statement of whatever proceedings he may have taken for the collection of said Judgment, and a full statement of whatever amount he may have received as the avails of said Judgment.

Should the said Assignee hereafter collect & receive the amount of said Judgment, or any part thereof, the said Assignee shall out of the money so collected, retain for his own use & benefit, the amount of the Costs in said Judgment, which costs are due to said Assignee at the Attorney on the Record for the Plaintiff in said Judgment, and also such other amounts as have heretofore been expended by said Attorney in obtaining said Judgment, and also such Costs and Charges as may have been expended or incurred by him in such further proceedings as said Assignee may have adopted in proceedings to collect the amount of said Judgment

Out of the residue of the amount that may have been collected & received by said Assignee he, the said Assignee hereby agrees to pay to said Plaintiff or to his legal Representatives, ten per cent of the amount of such residue, and ninety per cent of the amount of such residue shall be the property of said Assignee

The said Assignee is hereby authorized to compound with said Samuel Wise, upon such terms and conditions, as may appear proper to said Assignee, respecting said Judgment.

Dated February 12. 1866


Lauren Ford


The following reply from Finney in the handwriting of his wife, Rebecca, appears to be the draft copy dictated by Finney.



Oberlin Feb. 14th/66

Lauren Ford Esq. Dear Sir,


letter of Feb 10th, with the accom-

panying papers is before me.

I am too ill to give my attention

to the subject. An attempt to do

so, has cost me a restless


Before I sign any more

papers, I wish to know exactly

what you propose to do. If I un-

derstand the paperst that you have

now sent, you contemplate in-

stituting farther proceedings a-

gainst Wise in my name, in-

stead of your own. This would

leave me on the record responsible

to Wise, in case of your failure

at any point, to proceed, or finally


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to win. Now, my dear Sir,

you see that this will not do

for me. You are an old and

infirm man, and I am old

and cannot live long. The whole

amount that you propose to pay me

in case you should collect the whole

judgment, would be less than two

hundred dollars. Now, you can

see that I should not, on my

account, be made responsible on

the record, to Wise, for costs,

in case of your death, or

failure to pay. win.

My understanding

of your proposition, was, that I

should transfer the judgment

to you, and so transfer it, that

alfl future proceedings would be

in your own name, not in


Without ample security

against all liability to Wise, for


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costs, I ought not to consent to

having any farther proceedings

instituted against him, in my

name. This is not to question

your honesty nor honor, but

simply to secure me and my

heirs, in a case which is very

likely to occur, that of your

demise, or failure of ability

to pay win.

I am willing you should

have the judgment as your own

property, and proceed against

Wise in your own name

at your own discretion.

This is what I understood your

proposition to mean.

Time to will

to th But, I am too ill, to think

or act upon this subject. I will

write to day, to my son-in-law

Cox, to visit me immediately.

He is a lawyer, and I will


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make him my attorney to

act in these premises

I cannot sign these papers, in

their present form, without con-

sulting him.

I will commit all

the papers in my possession to

him. When he has examined them

he will write to you on the


In the mean time, if

you wish to write to him, please

address Gov. J. D. Cox, Columbus, Ohio,


Mrs. Rebecca Finney, for C. G. Finney.


[at the bottom of the page, reversed: filing reference in Rebecca Finney's handwriting]



Lauren Ford



Ford's reply is in the Finney Papers, Supplement #157:


New York Feby. 16. 1866

No 128 Broadway


Revnd Charles G. Finney

Dr Sir

Your letter of the 14th Inst

was recd this morning - In the papers that I sent

to you, it was not proposed that the farther proceedings

against Samuel Wise should be conducted in your

name, or that you could personally be made

responsible for any future Costs - If the papers should

be signed by you, it would follow of necessity that

all future proceedings should be in my own name as

assignee, and in such case you would not be held

responsible for the Costs of my proceedings hereafter -

Yours &c

L. Ford


The following letter is a copy in the handwriting of J. D. Cox [MS in Finney Papers]:


Oberlin, O. 20 Feb. 1866.

Dear Sir:

Being here for the purpose of visiting

my father-in-law Mr Finney, who is in feeble

health, he has shown me several communications

from you in regard to proceedings formerly had

against Mr Wise in N. York, including the as-

signment of the judgment, & your letter of the 16th

inst. in which you say it "was not proposed

"(by you) that the further proceedings

"against Samuel Wise should be conducted

"in your (Mr. Finney's) name, or that

"you (Mr. Finney) could personally

"be made responsible for any further

"costs." Under these circumstances,

& with this distinct agreement that all future

proceedings shall be in your own name as

assignee, so that he shall not be even

in form responsible for costs, I have

advised him to sign & forward the

assignment which he encloses herewith. His


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health is better than it was when

his last letter was written, & we are full

of hope that a short time will find him in his

usual vigor. He is however not yet equal

to the task of writing you himself, & I have

therefore written this at his request.

Very Respy

Your obedt srvt


L. Ford Esq,

128 Broadway. N.Y.