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    Description

    John Wesley Hardin is Granted a License to Practice Law in the State of Texas. This remarkable document is the report of a committee charged by the Court of Gonzales County with assessing Hardin's fitness to practice law in the state and making their recommendation.

    The report acknowledges Hardin's 1887 murder conviction, the sentence for which ran concurrently with another conviction for manslaughter. Inasmuch as Harding had served his sentence "the said Hardin was on the 16th March 1894 by proclamation of Gov. J.S. Hogg of the state of Texas granted a 'full pardon in both of said cases, and restoration to full citizenship and the right of suffrage'." The report cites at length the precedent of a previous Texas case which established that a previous criminal conviction could not be used as the basis to deny a law license, and "would report that having examined the Constitution and laws of the state they find nothing therein that would prohibit this court from issuing license to said Hardin to practice law in the state."

    The handwritten report covers 2½ sides and is signed by five prominent attorneys appointed by the court including: Thomas Moore Harwood, a member of the first board of regents for the University of Texas, William M. Atkinson, the District Attorney for the 25th District of Texas, George Farmer Burgess, a state congressman for eight consecutive terms, and Charles August Burchard, one of the first eight students to graduate from Texas A&M.

    Each 7.75" x 12.25" sheet has two small holes as shown, and there is some minor smudging of the ink. The second sheet is mounted to an album page, but there is no glue discoloration or bleed-through. A delightful artifact for one of the Old West's baddest of bad guys, a must for the serious Hardin or Texana collector.


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    Auction Dates
    October, 2015
    25th Sunday
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