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WILLIAM J. DUANE - AUTOGRAPH LETTER SIGNED 02/18/1804 CO-SIGNED BY: ROBERT KEAN - HFSID 17127

The future Secretary of the Treasury, fired for defying President Jackson, pleads for a short-term loan in the interests of his father, a very controversial newspaper editor. The request was directed to Revolutionary War general and Philadelphia sheriff (later mayor) John Barker.

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WILLIAM J. DUANE
The future Secretary of the Treasury, fired for defying President Jackson, pleads for a short-term loan in the interests of his father, a very controversial newspaper editor. The request was directed to Revolutionary War general and Philadelphia sheriff (later mayor) John Barker.
Autograph Letter signed: "Wm J. Duane", 2p, 8x6. No place, 1804 February 18. Tipped to a page of similar size. Addressed in Duane's hand on verso to: "John Barker Esq Sheriff". In full: "You will greatly oblige, and serve my father's interest, by lending for about a week one hundred or one hundred and fifty dollars. Real necessity obliges me to ask this favor, and I hourly expect money from my father at Washington City. The moment it is received I will return what you lend, if you require it in a short time. Very respectfully yours etc". In lower margin is an Autograph Receipt signed: "Robert Kean" In full: "Rec'd the loan of one Hundred/Dollars from Genl Barker/for Wm Duane." William John Duane (1780-1865) was the son of William Duane, editor of the ardently Jeffersonian Philadelphia Aurora. By 1804, with Thomas Jefferson in the White House, the Duane family was relatively safe, but the father had been physically attacked by Federalists angry at his abuse of President John Adams, who had sought to prosecute him under the notorious Sedition Act. William J. Duane would prove no stranger to controversy either. Appointed Secretary of the Treasury by President Jackson in May 1833, he was dismissed four months later for refusing to transfer US government funds from the Bank of the United States to various state banks. (Jackson's veto of a re-charter of the Bank of the United States had been the central issue of the 1832 Presidential campaign, so Jackson must not have expected resistance from Duane when he made the appointment.) Duane was the grandson of Benjamin Franklin through his mother, Sarah Franklin Bache. The letter is addressed to Major General John Barker (1746-1818), a Revolutionary War general who served as Sheriff (1794-1797, 1803-1808) of Philadelphia, and later as Mayor (1808-1812). No information is available on Robert Kean. Fragile. "Gen. Barker" was Lightly browned and stained. Folds touch signature. Nicked right edge. Pencil notes (unknown hand) at blank right margin.

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