DescriptionThomas Jefferson Rusk Autograph Letter Signed as U.S. senator from Texas. One page, two sided, 7.75" x 10", "Washington, March 6, 1855." Two days after the 34th U.S. Congress convened, Senator Rusk penned this letter to William D. Lewis, customs collector of the Port of Philadelphia, regarding Texas debt. In part: "As you have seen the Texas debt Bill has received the approval of the President. All that is now wanting for the law to go into effect is the acceptance of the Texas Legislature. In that body there will doubtless be much opposition to it. If the Texas auditors go to Austin and act with as little discretion as many of them have done at Washington, the strong probability is that it will be defeated." He closes by saying: "If the members of the Legislature should be importuned by the creditors, you may rely upon it, it will do great harm and may result in defeat." Rusk also mentions the possible appearance in Austin by Major S. Holman, who served as a member of Whitfield's Legion at the Battle of Iuka.
Rusk was an early political and military leader of the Republic of Texas, serving as its first secretary of war, and as a general at the Battle of San Jacinto. He became a politician and served as a U.S. Senator from Texas, from 1846 to 1857. During the special session of March 1857, the Senate elected him president pro tempore. While Rusk attended the spring session of Congress, his wife died of tuberculosis on April 23, 1856. Despondent over the death of his wife and ill from a tumor at the base of his neck, Rusk committed suicide by a self-inflicted gunshot wound on July 29, 1857, at the age of 54. Letter is in outstanding condition; bright, clean, and sharp. Very fine.
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