• Early NY Sheriff Hires Half-Abolitionist, Half-Whig Deputy; Town and Businessman Angry

    Free Shipping!
    There is only 1 item left in stock.

    HAMILTON BEECHER (1816-1883) was the son of Hezekiah Beecher, who settled on Quality Hill in the town of Lenox, NY, in 1816, in the tanning business. Hamilton purchased a large building, then known as the Holladay House, and converted it into a large hotel. The third story became an opera hall.  The project nearly broke Beecher financially, but a friend came to his aid financially.  A copy of his obituary is included.


    Beecher had an interest, as might be expected, in politics, including the Whig Party and abolitionists.  Writing 25 years before the Civil War, which ultimately decided the slaver issue, Beecher scolds Isaac Brown, Jr., who was the sheriff of Madison, for appointing a deputy whom the Whigs would be dissatisfied with because the deputy was “half-Whig, half-abolitionist.”  December 24, 1840, 2pp, 7 ¾” x 10” ALS from Canastota, NY, to Brown (1803-1865) of Leonardsville, Madison, NY.


    “Mr. Brown Sir you cannot imagine my surprise at hearing that you had intimated that you should appoint George B. Row your deputy. In this town, you could not do anything that would more effectually blunt our political prospects. If offices of profit and honor are to [be] bestowed upon men who do nothing for the cause, it is indeed discouraging to those that have toiled long and hard through the political campaign of 1840 [that you] consider well before you make that appointment for in that appointment I assure you that…the Whigs of this town will be dissatisfied…I should not have had a word to say if any other Whig had got the appointment. But to have a half-Whig, half-abolitionist appointed to that office is rather more than I like to stand…Other considerations… ought to influence that appointment. Row is a man that will not do anything for the cause of our party and it is of no consequence to him…for he is a man of good circumstances, has a first rate farm and does not need the emolument of an office.


    “Mr. Robe and Mr. Danfourth or either of them [are] much more entitled to that appointment than Row for they are both of them men that have not much property, but are men of character and able to give any security that should be required and would have a considerable of political influence in town. They have worked hard in the cause…I wish you would be at Morrisville on Thursday afternoon the last day of this month. There will be several individuals there…from this town and we want to see you on the subject of this appointment…You will please pardon my plain language. I have only spoken my sentiments. “Yours Respectfully “H Beecher”


    Creative spelling. Misspellings corrected and punctuation added for clarity in the translation. The letter has an integral address leaf with faded postmark and manuscript postage.  Seal tear, not affecting writing.


    Everything we sell is guaranteed authentic forever to the original buyer. We also offer a 30-day return policy. If you discover a problem with anything you purchase from us, please contact us immediately (617-236-4893). Our goal is to please every customer. We are pleased to be members of the Universal Autograph Collectors Club, The Manuscript Society and The Ephemera Society. [P 134]