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JAMES A. GARY - TYPED LETTER SIGNED 01/29/1898 - HFSID 266232

 
JAMES A. GARY. Typed Letter signed: "Jas A. Gary" as Postmaster General, 1p, 5½x8½. On official letterhead. Washington, D.C., 1898 January 29. To William F. Stone, Baltimore, Maryland. In full: "I enclose you a letter received a few days since from a young man, who has been in my employ for a number of years as stenographer. He has endeared himself to me very much, and I would be glad if you will interest yourself along the line of his wishes. I am told that you have the power to arrange this matter, and I will consider it a personal favor if you will do so. Very truly yours." Gary (1833-1920) was U.S. Postmaster General (1897-1898) under President McKinley. A member of the Maryland Republican State Committee (1880-1896), Gary was his party's (unsuccessful) candidate for Governor in 1879. This letter is a classic example of 19th century patronage politics. Gary had worked with Stone, the Chairman of the Baltimore City Republican Committee, to secure the election of President McKinley in 1896. Gary was rewarded with the Cabinet position of Postmaster General, in that era a prime source of jobs for supporters of elected candidates. As this letter shows, job referrals had become somewhat circumspect by the end of the century - reformers were condemning the old "spoils system" and pushing to bring more government jobs into the realm of "merit" civil service - local political leaders still had plenty of jobs to dispense when their party was in power. Lightly creased. 1x¼-inch stain at lower edge. Overall, fine condition.


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JAMES A. GARY  


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JAMES A. GARY
Born: October 22, 1833 in Uncasville, Connecticut
Died: October 31, 1920 in Baltimore, Maryland





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