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RUTHERFORD B. HAYES & HIS FIRST CABINET - DOCUMENT 310841

 

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RUTHERFORD B. HAYES and HIS ORIGINAL CABINET: WILLIAM WHEELER, WILLIAM EVARTS, JOHN SHERMAN, GEORGE MCCRARY, CHARLES DEVENS, DAVID KEY, and CARL SCHURZ
These eight cards comprise a collection of signatures from the United States President and his Cabinet. Two have dated their signatures from March 1877, the first month of the new administration. All but one member of the Cabinet is represented here. An extremely rare collection!
Collection composed of: 1) Signature: "R B Hayes", 3½x2 card, Toned, adhesive residue (on verso), stain running through center; 2) Signature: "W. A. Wheeler", 3½x2 card, Toned, adhesive residue (on verso), pencil note (unknown hand) on verso; 3) Signature: "Wm. M. Evarts/March 24. 1877", 3½x2 card, Toned, Pencil note (unknown hand) on verso, Adhesive residue (on verso); 4) "John Sherman/Ohio", 3½x2 card, Toned, Pencil note (unknown hand) on verso, Adhesive residue (on verso); 5) Signature: "G. W. McCrary/Secy of War/March 27, 1877", 3½x2 card, Toned, Pencil note (unknown hand) on verso, Adhesive residue (on verso); 6) Signature: "Charles Devens/Atty Gen/U.S.", 3½x2 card, Toned, Pencil note (unknown hand) on verso, Adhesive residue (on verso); 7) Signature: "D. M. Key", 3½x2 card, Pencil note (unknown hand) on verso, Adhesive residue (on verso); 8) Signature: "C. Schurz", 3½x2 card, Toned, Pencil note (unknown hand) on verso, Adhesive residue (on verso). President Rutherford B. Hayes (1822-1893), the 19th President of the United States (1877-1881), served the Union cause with distinction during the Civil War. In 1862, he suffered a serious wound while leading a charge at South Mountain and rose to the rank of Brigadier General by 1864. He served Ohio in the U.S. Congress (1865-1867) and then as Governor (1868-1872, 1876-1877). The Republican nominee in 1876, he was declared the winner of a bitterly disputed Presidential election on March 2, 1877.  He lost the popular vote and won the electoral vote by a margin of one after 20 disputed Electoral Votes were awarded to Hayes by a special commission voting 5-4 on straight party lines. Hayes withdrew federal troops from the South, effectively ending Reconstruction. A reformer, he worked to curb the corruption in government which was rampant during the Grant administration. Vice President William A. Wheeler (1819-1897), previously a state legislator, represented New York in the United States House of Representatives (1861-1863, 1869-1877). He made an impression by refusing to accept a Congressional pay raise in 1873. When Rutherford B. Hayes, who had left the choice of a running mate up to the convention, learned that Wheeler had been tapped, he reportedly responded: "Who is Wheeler?" (They became friends, however, and Wheeler was a frequent guest in the Hayes White House). Wheeler did not campaign actively, and played no significant role in the dispute about the outcome of that election. After serving a single term as Vice President (1877-1881), he retired from public life. William M. Evarts (1818-1901) served as Secretary of State during Hayes' entire term. His major achievement was skillfully negotiating the Treaty of 1880, curbing Chinese immigration without alienating the Chinese government. He had earlier served as President Andrew Johnson's Chief Counsel in his impeachment trial proceedings in 1868. A century later, Evarts' great-grandson, Archibald Cox, was appointed and later fired as Watergate Special Prosecutor by President Nixon). After Johnson was acquitted by one vote, he appointed Evarts as Attorney General, a position he held from 1868 to 1869. John Sherman (1823-1900) served as Ohio Congressman from 1855 to 1861 and U.S. Senator from 1861 to 1877, when he became Secretary of the Treasury under President Hayes (1877-1881). He was then elected U.S. Senator in place of James A. Garfield, who was elected President, and served from 1881 to 1897. Sherman was McKinley's Secretary of State from 1897 to 1898, resigning because of ill health the day Congress declared war on Spain. His name will forever be remembered as the author of the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890, the first major federal action to curb the power of the giant business monopolies. He was the younger brother of Union General William Tecumseh Sherman. George W. McCrary (1835-1890), a 4-term Republican Congressman from Iowa (1869-1877), was Secretary of War in the Hayes administration until resigning that office in 1879 to accept the President's appointment to a federal judgeship (8th Circuit Court). He resigned from the Court in 1884 to become General Counsel for the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad. Charles Devens (1820-1891), who was first offered a Cabinet post as Hayes' Secretary of War, declined the appointment, serving instead as Attorney General from 1877 to 1881. During the Civil War, Devens was Brigadier-General in the Massachusetts State Militia and was chosen Major of the 3rd Battalion of Massachusetts Rifles, seeing action at Ball's Bluff, Fair Oaks, Fredericksburg, and Chancellorsville. He was brevetted Major General for gallantry and good conduct at the capture of Richmond. His political career included two terms in the Massachusetts Senate (1848-1849), United States Marshal for the District of Massachusetts (1849-1853) and Justice of the State Supreme Court, where he returned after he served in the Cabinet. David M. Key (1824-1900), a Confederate colonel and Tennessee Senator (1875-18777) was Hayes' Postmaster General from 1877-1880. A Democrat, Key was included in the Cabinet as part of Republican Hayes' grand bargain to resolve the disputed Presidential election of 1876 and end Reconstruction in the South. Postmaster General was a surprising choice for a Republican President to give to a Democrat, since that office dispensed many patronage appointments. Key later served as a federal district court judge. Carl Schurz (1829-1906) was a German-born United States politician, military veteran, and publisher. Educated in modern-day Germany, he moved to the United States in 1852 after the 1848 revolution in Germany failed. At the time, Germany was still a loose confederation of dozens of small states, and the revolution sought to establish a single state. While the revolution failed, Germany as a nation coalesced just a few decades later in 1871. Schurz settled in Wisconsin in 1855 and became active in the anti-slavery movement, joining the Republican Party. In 1861, Lincoln appointed him the United States Ambassador to Spain. This foreign relations position was especially important: Schurz was sent to Spain to dissuade them from supporting the South. Upon his return, he was commissioned brigadier general of the Union volunteers and saw action at Second Bull Run, Chancellorsville and Gettysburg. In 1865, President Andrew Johnson sent him to report on conditions in the South, a report that was largely ignored. On March 4, 1869, Schurz became the first German-born American to be elected to the U.S. Senate, where he represented Missouri until 1875. He decided not to run for reelection. Two years later, he was nominated to be Secretary of the Interior under President Hayes from 1877-1881. Schurz was a champion for Indian rights, fighting to keep the Office of Indian Affairs in the Department of Interior and not the War Department. He moved to New York in 1881 and became editor of the New York Evening Post. A widely published author, he was famous for saying "My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right." The only member of Hayes' original Cabinet absent from this collection is Secretary of the Navy Richard W. Thompson. Toned. Otherwise, fine condition on all pieces.


For more documents by these signers click the names below:

PRESIDENT RUTHERFORD B. HAYES   CHARLES DEVENS   GEORGE W. McCRARY   MAJOR GENERAL CARL SCHURZ   JOHN SHERMAN   WILLIAM M. EVARTS   VICE PRESIDENT WILLIAM A. WHEELER   DAVID M. KEY  


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PRESIDENT RUTHERFORD B. HAYES
Born: October 4, 1822 in Delaware, Ohio
Died: January 17, 1893 in Spiegel Grove, Ohio





CHARLES DEVENS
Born: April 4, 1820 in Boston, Massachusetts
Died: January 7, 1891 in Cambridge, Massachusetts





GEORGE W. McCRARY
Born: August 29, 1835 in Evansville, Indiana
Died: June 23, 1890 in Saint Joseph, Missouri





MAJOR GENERAL CARL SCHURZ
Born: March 2, 1829 in Liblar, Kingdom of Prussia, Germany
Died: May 14, 1906 in New York City, New York





JOHN SHERMAN
Born: May 10, 1823 in Lancaster, Ohio
Died: October 22, 1900 in Washington, District of Columbia





WILLIAM M. EVARTS
Born: February 6, 1818 in Boston, Massachusetts
Died: February 28, 1901 in New York City, New York





VICE PRESIDENT WILLIAM A. WHEELER
Born: June 19, 1819 in Malone, New York
Died: June 4, 1887 in Malone, New York





DAVID M. KEY
Born: January 27, 1824 in Greeneville, Tennessee
Died: February 3, 1900 in Chattanooga, Tennessee





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