DANIEL WEBSTER - CIVIL APPOINTMENT SIGNED 05/10/1842 - HFSID 31382
Sale Price $337.50
While negotiating a diplomatic triumph, Webster confirms a civil appointment
Civil Appointment signed: "Danl Webster" as Secretary of State, 1 page, 8x10. Washington, D.C., 1842 May 10. Printed document with manuscript particulars. Webster certifies that Nicholas B. Van Zandt is a duly commissioned Justice of the Peace for the District of Columbia. Departmental seal at lower left. Daniel Webster (1782-1852) served in the U.S. House of Representatives, representing New Hampshire (1813-1817) and later Massachusetts (1823-1827). Then he represented Massachusetts in the Senate (1827-1841, 1845-1850). He served as Secretary of State (1841-1843) under President William Henry Harrison, declining to join his fellow Whigs in resigning from President Tyler's Cabinet when the latter departed from Harrison's policies. Instead, Webster stayed in office long enough to negotiate the importantWebster-Asburton Treaty with Britain (August 9, 1842) Negotiated with Lord Ashburton, the British envoy in Washington, the treaty was a notable diplomatic success. It settled the Maine-Canada and Minnesota-Canada boundary, giving the U.S. most of the disputed territory and navigation rights on the St. John River, arranged cooperation in suppression of the African slave trade, and was accompanied by a British apology for prior seizure of a U.S. steamer on the Niagara River ("the Caroline affair:). He again resigned from the Senate to become President Fillmore's Secretary of State (1850). Although unsuccessful in pursuit of the Presidency (1836 and after), Webster earned a reputation as one of America's greatest orators. He won important cases before the Supreme Court, including McCullough vs. Maryland (1819), and made an eloquent case for national unity during the Senate Webster-Hayne debate of 1830. In Stephen Vincent Benet's famous short story, "The Devil and Daniel Webster", Webster wins a legal duel with the Devil for a farmer's soul. Left edge of document is frayed and torn, including damage to seal. Script and signature are unaffected, except that a 2-inch tear touches three words of text, which are still legible. 1½-inch diagonal tear and minor paper separation at right edge. Nail head-sized hole in upper margin. Lightly foxed.
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