Lot 8: James Buchanan Handwritten Signed Letter

RR Auction

RR Auction

2019-05-28 09:41:26

Lot 8

ALS, one page both sides, 8 x 10, January 13, 1842. Letter to John C. Plumer, in part: “I observe by the public papers that my old friend & competitor at the Bar, Judge Rogers, has been nominated to the Senate. Although I do not anticipate any serious objection to his confirmation, yet my own feelings dictate that I should communicate at least to one of my friends in the Senate my knowledge of his character, both judicial & personal. I have been upon terms of the closest intimacy with him for almost thirty years & I have never known a more honest & honorable man nor a more sage & upright judge. One great purpose of limiting the judicial tenure to a term of years, a provision in the Constitution of which I highly approve, was to subject the character & conduct of the judge to the ordeal of public opinion; and if his conduct has been such as to merit & obtain the public approbation, that he should then be rewarded with a re-appointment…The Exchequer Bill alias Government Bank is still under discussion. Mr. Benton is now making a powerful speech against it. In its present form, or any thing like it, Congress will never adopt it…The Democratic party, at least in the Senate, were never more united or more harmonious. They move along on the direct road of these principles & are acquiring moral strength throughout the country every day. On the other hand the Whigs are divided & disputed & know not what to do. The Governor’s message is excellent & has received the approbation of every Democrat with whom I have conversed.” In fine condition. In the wake of the Panic of 1837 and its subsequent depression, the Whig party sought to rescue the nation’s floundering economy by rallying around William Henry Harrison in the 1840 presidential election. Following Harrison’s unprecedented death, John Tyler’s subsequent succession proved at odds with Congressional Whigs, which saw Tyler twice vetoing Henry Clay’s legislation for a national banking act. The Whig party’s factionalism and shaky loyalty were later embodied by its disastrous showing at the 1842 Senate elections, which would further contribute to the aforesaid harmony amongst Buchanan’s fellow Democrats.

Estimate: $2,000-$2,500

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