Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Anthony Wayne Autograph Letter Signed "Anty. Wayne". Two pages of a bifolium, 8" x 10", n.p.; [ circa 1792]. Letter from Wayne to Alexander Addison (1758-1807), a federal judge presiding over the Fifth Judicial District in Pennsylvania (most of Western Pennsylvania) concerning raising men from Pennsylvania to serve in the Legion of the United States.

    "By the Act of Congress for regulating the Military establishment of the United States-passed the 13th day of April 1790. The Rules & Articles of War-are particularly recognized, & made part of the 'Supreme Law of the Land'-and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby-Agreeably to the Constitution of the United States.

    I have been thus particular, from a sincere desire, to prevent any improper or unnecessary interference between the Civil & Military, jurisdiction, & to preserve that harmony that ever ought to subsist, between the Citizens & Soldiers of America, especially for those whose protection the present army is principally intended, & therefore the Executive of the U.S. have a claim of support from the Civil Authority, towards the Completion of the Legion, & permit me to add, that-that support, is absolutely necessary, at this Crisis.

    I am therefore persuaded, that you as one of the Judges of the State of Pennsylvania will not withhold it: & from my knowledge-of the liberal & patriotic sentiments of the Chief Justice, I am confident of every Legal support, on his part.

    Impressed with those sentiments, I have the honor to be with due esteem & regard

    Your most obt. & very Humb Sert.

    Anty. Wayne"

    This letter was presumably written when the Legion of the United States was being organized. The Legion was a reorganization and extension of the Continental Army, and served from 1792 to 1796 under the command of Major General Wayne. Congress and President Washington authorized a standing army composed of professional soldiers, rather than relying on state militias. Primarily formed in reaction to multiple defeats against Native American nations in the Ohio country in 1790 and 1791, the Legion's role was to assert U.S. sovereignty over U.S. borders in the western territories and Great Lakes regions. The Legion is best known for its victory at the Battle of Fallen Timbers in August 1794. Following the 1795 Treaty of Greenville with the Western Confederacy of Native American nations and the Jay Treaty with Great Britain, the Legion was reduced in size and rechristened the Army of the United States in 1796.

    Condition: Letter has usual folds; it was previously inlaid, but the paper has been trimmed off. Annotations in pencil and soiling along folds on verso of integral blank.

    More Information: Anthony Wayne (1745-1796) was an American soldier, officer and statesman. He adopted a military career at the outset of the American Revolutionary War, where his military exploits and fiery personality quickly earned him promotion to brigadier general and the nickname "Mad Anthony".

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    November, 2020
    12th Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 8
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 361

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    25% on the first $300,000 (minimum $49), plus 20% of any amount between $300,000 and $3,000,000, plus 12.5% of any amount over $3,000,000 per lot.

    Sold on Nov 12, 2020 for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Consign to the 2021 October 20 Manuscripts Signature Auction - Dallas.

    Learn about consigning with us

    This was my first time dealing with an auction house, and I am 100% completely impressed with Heritage. There is not an aspect of this process that I have a critique for.
    Darryl S.,
    Stuart, FL
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search