Lot 354

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Description:

WINFIELD SCOTT
(1786 - 1866) American general, a hero during the War of 1812. Commanded the U.S. Army from 1841 through the Mexican and Civil Wars. A presidential candidate in 1852. Important Mexican War-content A.L.S. ''Winfield Scott'', 4pp. 8vo., Old Point Comfort, Va., July 28, 1852 to Dr. Thomas M. Brewer (1814-1880), American naturalist from an influential Massachusetts family. While seeking the presidency as a candidate of the Whigs, Scott writes supporting the negotiations which had been undertaken by diplomat Nicholas Trist to secure peace with Spain following the Mexican War. In small part: ''…The ''extract'' &c is a miserable fiction…Mr. [Nicholas] Trist & myself…knew each others persons at Washington quite well. He was appointed commissioner partly on account of his acquaintance with the Spanish language, & partly because he was known to entertain the most violent prejudice against me…We had, after his landing, had a violent quarrel by correspondence…& did not meet until he reached Puebla. There he was seized with a dangerous illness…I instantly repaired to his sick bed…he became grateful & devoted. This is the whole story. Mr. Trist''s appointment was eminently fortunate in respect to peace. He is highly brave & honourable, & was a great favourite with the Mexican Commissioners…'' Scott closes his letter complaining that he had been suffering from the ''premonitions of cholera'' but expected to return to his office soon. Very good. Nicholas Trist (1800-1874) successfully negotiated the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgoon Feb. 2, 1848, ending the Mexican War. Trist''s negotiation was controversial among expansionist Democrats since he had ignored President James Polk''s instructions and settled on a smaller cession of Mexican territory than many expansionists wanted and felt he could have obtained, failing to obtain Baja California. As for Scott, who commanded American forces in the war, he at first despised the scheming Trist, but following the negotiation of peace the pair became fast friends.

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May 9, 2017 10:00 AM EDT
Elkton, MD, US

Alexander Historical Auctions LLC

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