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    Zachary Taylor Document Signed as president. Also signed by John M. Clayton as secretary of state. One page, two sided, 8" x 12.25", Washington, D.C., June 28, 1849. Three months into his presidency, Taylor received this request from U.S. Secretary of State John M. Clayton concerning "the disbursement of the public moneys." In part: "I have the honor to request that you will... authorize such advances to be made to Alexander Hamilton Derrick, Agent of this Department, as may be necessary to the prompt fulfillment of the public engagements...and that you will authorize funds to be placed at the said Alexander Hamilton Derrick's dispositions to meet the expenses attendant upon the Board of Commissioners of Claims. . . ."

    At this precise time in his short term as president, Taylor was deeply concerned with the slavery question in the western territories. Both California and New Mexico were poised for admission into the Union, and although he owned slaves, Taylor took a moderate stance on the territorial expansion of slavery. This greatly angered his fellow Southerners, but he stood firm, telling them that, if necessary to enforce the rule of law, he would personally lead the Army against a rebellion. Henry Clay then proposed the complex Compromise of 1850, a series of bills aimed at resolving the territorial and slavery controversies arising from the Mexican-American War (1846-1848), but Taylor died as it was being debated (the Clay version failed but another version was passed under the new president, Millard Fillmore). Although it cannot be verified, it is quite possible that the funds requested in this document were intended to be used by the State Department's Home Bureau in connection with the ultimate admission of California and New Mexico as states. Document shows creamy age toning, with a large and very bold signature: "Z. Taylor." In very fine condition. A highly desirable document from the brief, 16-month term of Zachary Taylor - perfect for framing and prominent display!


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    Auction Dates
    October, 2008
    17th-18th Friday-Saturday
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