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Thursday, Nov. 15, 2012 11:51 pm


The Sangamon County Bar Association is addressing two well-known shortages by putting another lawyer in the local courthouse while also gracing Springfield with not one but three depictions of Abraham Lincoln.

Lawyers being lawyers, the bar association waited until the last minute – actually three years beyond the last minute – to file, er install, three busts of Lincoln in the Sangamon County courthouse to mark the 2009 bicentennial of Lincoln’s birth. No continuances were granted, but given that the bust committee includes two judges, Sangamon County Circuit Judge Pete Cavanagh and Associate Judge John “Mo” Madonia, no sanctions are expected. Illinois Supreme Court Justice Rita Garman will speak at the ribbon cutting scheduled for 3:30 p.m. Nov. 15.

Nearly 300 attorneys dug into their own pockets to come up with $40,000 to pay for the three busts that depict Lincoln during his lawyering days. A bust on the fifth floor shows Lincoln as a just-starting-out attorney in the 1830s. A sixth-floor bust sculpted from an 1860 life mask shows Lincoln on the cusp of presidency while he was William Herndon’s law partner. A seventh-floor depiction also shows Lincoln near the end of his legal career.

All busts are made from bronze. No word on how bright noses might get from lawyers rubbing Lincoln schnozzes for luck before heading into court.