He did. On the evening of February 27, 1860, Lincoln gave a famous speech at Cooper Union. This was a political speech made before New York City powerbrokers. The purpose was to help secure his nomination to run for president. Here's a snippet.
“We hear that you will not abide the election of a Republican president! In that event, you say you will destroy the Union; and then, you say, the great crime of having destroyed it will be upon us! That is cool. A highwayman holds a pistol to my ear, and mutters through his teeth, ‘Stand and deliver, or I shall kill you and then you will be a murderer!”
I used this speech in a prologue for The Shut Mouth Society. Many readers have questioned whether Lincoln actually used modern slang. Luckily, there’s documentation aplenty.
This phrase brings up a point about writing historical fiction. I have an exceptional editor who highlights words or phrases not appropriate to my time period. (For example, she informed me that Winston Churchill invented the word underbelly.) But “That’s cool” taught me something additional: historical writers shouldn't use phrases readers believe are modern, even if they're historically accurate. When a word or phrase strikes the reader as incongruous, it takes them out of the story--a mortal sin for fiction writers. So my advice is to rephrase anything that even appears unfit the period of your story.
There are exceptions, of course. If I were writing The Shut Mouth Society today, I would include Lincoln’s use of the ubiquitously cool slang phrase. Why? Because it revealed one of his personality characteristics and dialogue should always be character revealing.
Just for fun, here's some old, old slang that sounds modern.
Trip the light fantastic – 1632High jinks – 17th centuryIn the dumps – 1534Elbow grease – 17th centuryNose out of joint – 1581Plain as the nose on your face – ShakespeareSing a different tune – 1390Play fast and loose – 16th century cheating gameGive short shrift – ShakespeareFish out of water – 1380Hocus-pocus –1656Hair of the dog that bit me – 1546Shirt off your back - ChaucerCutting off your nose to spite your face – 1658Lift oneself by the bootstraps – ShakespeareWithout rhyme or reason – 16th centuryProud as hell – 1711Break the ice – 18th century or olderAdd insult to injury – 1st centuryBite the dust – HomerMountain out of a molehill – 1570In one ear and out the other – 1583Hem and haw – 1580Win one’s spurs – 1425Other fish to fry – 1712Unable to see the woods for the trees – 1546By hook or by crook – 12th centuryLock the barn after the horse is stolen – 1390Donnybrook - 1204, riotous fair in city of same namePhiladelphia lawyer – 1735
Now, that's cool!