Washington: 1844. Seventeen lines of text, plus salutation and closing, written entirely in ink manuscript to "My dear Sir." Signed, "Most faithfully yours, I.C. Bates." Printed on recto of a single leaf. Matted on the verso of the inner front margin. Uniformly toned, Very Good.
Bates [1779-1841] was a Massachusetts Whig, elected to the U.S. Senate in 1841. He served as such until his death. John Tyler had been William Henry Harrison's running mate on the Whigs' winning 1840 presidential ticket. Upon Harrison's death Tyler became President-- the first to become so in this manner. Though nominally a Whig, Tyler-- a Virginia Strict Constructionist who would end his career in the Confederate Congress-- broke with Whig positions on Tariffs, Internal Improvements, and a National Bank. These rebuffs naturally generated much dismay among Whigs, who had hoped to celebrate their first presidential victory. Tyler's estrangement from the political party that made him President is reflected in this Letter:
"When I recd your favor I was so much engaged in other matters I neglected an answer [for] which please pardon. Nothing would delight me more than to see Mr. Otis Jun on the bench of the Sup[reme] Court, & I certainly wish Mr. T. all good things; but I do not suppose there is any chance for either of them. I have no influence with the Prest. & ask of him no favors. He has put it out of the power of us Whigs to give him any support. The names of those gentlemen will be brought to his notice. What he intends to do we wait and see. He has got some state right notions in his head which he wishes [to] install upon the Bench." Item #37021