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MAJOR GENERAL HOWELL COBB - DOCUMENT SIGNED 09/07/1857 CO-SIGNED BY: AUGUSTUS SCHELL - HFSID 312885

HOWELL COBB; AUGUSTUS SCHELL As Buchanan's Secretary of the Treasury, the future Confederate general signs a customs document, previously attested by Customs Collector and Democratic politician Augustus Schell.

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HOWELL COBB; AUGUSTUS SCHELL
As Buchanan's Secretary of the Treasury, the future Confederate general signs a customs document, previously attested by Customs Collector and Democratic politician Augustus Schell.
Document signed: "Howell Cobb" as Secretary of the Treasury, "Augustus Schell" as New York Collector of Customs, 1 page, 7¾x10. Treasury Department, 1857 September 7. Confirmation that merchandise imported from Maine aboard the ship "Shawmut" has been inspected and conforms to the invoice in accordance with law. HOWELL COBB (1815-1868) represented Georgia in the U.S. House of Representatives as a Democrat (1843-1851, 1855-1857), serving as Speaker of the House from 1849-1851. He was Governor of Georgia (1851-1853) and served as Buchanan's Secretary of the Treasury from 1857 to December 10, 1860, when he resigned. A staunch defender of slavery but originally opposed secession, he served as Chairman of the convention of delegates from the seceded states, which assembled in Montgomery, Alabama on February 24, 1861 to form a Confederate government. In July 1861, Cobb accepted a commission as Colonel in the Confederate Army and was later commissioned a Major General. He saw action at Shiloh and Antietam and led Georgia militia in unsuccessful resistance to Sherman's march through Georgia to the sea. In the closing days of the war, Cobb opposed Robert E. Lee's proposal to arm slave units, commenting that "if slaves make good soldiers, then our whole theory of slavery is wrong." AUGUSTUS SCHELL (1812-1884), a corporation lawyer, assumed a leadership role in New York's Tammany Hall after the downfall of Boss Tweed. He was Chairman of New York's Democratic Committee (1853-1856) and New York's Collector of Customs, a patronage post, in the Buchanan administration. He supported "southern" Democrat John Breckinridge for the Presidency in 1860. Corners worn and creased. Normal mailing folds. Faint stain under 'Secretary of the Treasury'. Surface creases. Ink notes (unknown hand) on verso. Lightly toned.

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