The paper, signed by Lincoln on March 23, 1865, appointed a San Diego resident to a federal post.
“I was reorganizing some collections when I came across a large box containing this framed certificate” explained Jane Kenealy, Archivist for San Diego History Center.
After she compared the signature to another document the center has, she felt they matched closely enough that she would try to get the newly discovered memo authenticated by the Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield, Illinois.
Museum staffers there confirmed the signature is that of President Lincoln, according to the center's news release.
“It’s really a terrific find for us,” says Executive Director, David Kahn. “These are the sorts of fascinating things that emerge periodically from within any collection of the enormous size and scope of the one here at the San Diego History Center."
The documents will be on display at the San Diego History Center from Feb. 7 to 28.