Description

    Alexander Hamilton Autograph Letter Signed in the Third Person A.L.S. "Mr. Hamilton" in the text, 1 p., 6.75" x 8", n.p., September 9, 1794, to Samuel Hodgson. He writes, in full: "Mr. Hamilton requests Mr. Hodgson to furnish him immediately with a return of whatever accouterments & arms for Cavalry may be in the public stores. Specifying also such as have been lately sent forward - Sep. 9, 1794."

    The Whiskey Rebellion arose from the 1791 tax issued on distilled spirits, a measure supported by Hamilton in his role as Secretary of the Treasury to pay down the enormous debt incurred by the United States during the American Revolution. The tax levied a six-cent per-gallon tax on large volume distillers, while smaller operations were forced to pay nine-cents per-gallon. Most of the distillery operations in the Appalachian west were of the smaller variety and thus adversely impacted by the tax. Over the next several years, a nascent rebellion grew initially in the form of non-payment of the tax then escalated into harassment directed at tax collectors in western regions stretching from Georgia to Pennsylvania. After the tarring and feathering of a tax collector near Pittsburgh in the summer of 1794 (resulting in his death) and other mob actions, President Washington, remembering well the threat of Shay's Rebellion nearly ten years earlier, invoked the Militia Act of 1792. Hamilton, as Secretary of the Treasury, also assumed the supervisory post over the army as Inspector General. In that role, under Washington, he addressed a variety of logistical issues that made deploying the large military force possible through what was still a relatively untamed frontier; and this letter was likely written in this capacity. Also included is a trimmed address panel engrossed entirely in Hamilton's hand and including the directive: "To be carried immediately to Mr. Hodgson".

    Both pieces bear uneven toning resulting from previous framing; however, area with holograph remains light and ink very bold. Letter is tipped at top margin, overall condition of both pieces is very good.


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    Auction Dates
    April, 2007
    16th-17th Monday-Tuesday
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