Alexander Historical Auctions LLC

Lot 160

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Description: JAMES A. GARFIELD
(1831 - 1881) Twentieth President of the United States, Union army major general, assassinated while in office. Fine content A.L.S. 2pp. 8vo., Cleveland, Jan. 1, 1880 to a political ally concerning his chances for his nomination by the Ohio legislature to fill the Senate seat left vacant in December 1879 by Allen G. Thurman. He also alludes to the problem of the possibility of U.S. Grant being nominated for another term by the Republican National Convention. Garfield writes, in full: "Yours of the 27th came just as I was leaving Washington. The drift of my information, from several courses is that Howard is for me; but I also have some indications that he is not altogether certain -- I think it will be well for you to ascertain the exact situation -- I do not see how any combination could be made to defeat me -- but all our friends should be vigilant -- I hope you will go to Colum[bus] soon. You can quickly measure the strength and methods of the opposition -- I am doing what I can to restrain the unwise course of the Leader in reference to the Presidency -- But it is a difficult thing to do." Garfield was likely referencing Roscoe Conkling who was a leader of the "Stalwart" faction and a key supporter of Grant's nomination for a third term: something Garfield and other "Half-Breeds" opposed. Soon after Garfield assumed the presidency, Cockling resigned his senate seat in protest over Garfield's appointment of one of Conkling's political enemies as Collector of the Port of New York. In January 1880, Garfield was nominated by the Ohio legislature to represent the state in the Senate beginning March 4, 1881. In June 1880, Garfield attended the Republican National Convention in Chicago as a supporter of John Sherman, but ended up becoming the compromise nominee for the presidency when the convention deadlocked after 35 ballots. Ironically, it would be John Sherman who would take up Garfield's senate seat in March 1881. Moderate dampstains at top corners, usual folds, else very good condition.

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March 30, 2011 11:00 AM EDT

Stamford, CT, US

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