Single page, 7 3/4 x 93/4, ALS, sent by Smith Thompson to Gettysburg, PA, father and son, attorneys Moses and William McClean, regarding the potential lease or purchase of a farm in Virginia Mills, PA. Includes the original cover, addressed to the attorneys at Gettysburg, patriotic seal and original stamp. The letter was written five months before the crucial Battle of Gettysburg, but the letter contains no Civil War content. Still a nice, clean Gettysburg related collectible.
Written from Montgomery County, MD, Feb’y 25th, 1863.
“Having observed an advertisement in the ‘Balt Sun’ announcing the fact that you are agents for ‘Mary and Mary V. Myers’ for the disposition of a farm known as ‘Virginia Mills,’ I write to know if the place would be rented or leased with the privilege of buying at a fixed price. And if so, upon what terms and when possession could begin?
“If the above arrangement could not be made be kind enough to inform me of the price of the land per acre and the exact number of acres & terms of sale. And further, if real estate in this state or in the city of Washington would be taken in part payment, or for the whole of the purchase money?
“By answering at your earliest convenience, you will oblige me, and if your communication should be satisfactory, I will visit the place.
“Very Resp’ly yr obt Servt: Smith Thompson
“Please address me at
“Silver Spring P.O.
SMITH THOMPSON was born in 1843 or 1844, right before or shortly after the death of his father, Smith Thompson, a United States Secretary of the Navy from 1819 to 1823, and a United States Supreme Court justice from 1823 until his death in December 1843.
MOSES McCLEAN (1804-1870) was elected as a Democrat to the Twenty-ninth Congress (March 4, 1845-March 3, 1847); resumed his law practice in Gettysburg, PA; member of the state House of Representatives in 1855; continued practicing law until his death in Gettysburg.
WILLIAM McCLEAN (1833-1915) was a prominent Gettysburg attorney and served as an Adams County, PA, judge.
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