Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations. 1989.
Abraham Lincoln (180965)
Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration.
President Abraham Lincoln, annual message to Congress, December 3, 1861.The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln, ed. Roy P. Basler, vol. 5, p. 52 (1953).