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LETTER FROM PRESIDENT JOHN TYLER – 1844

Transcription and notations by Judith C. Ware
Judy C. Ware
Owner of original letter – Mr. & Mrs. Scott Dudgeon


Washington   December 28, 1844

My Dear Colonel,

     Your letter of the 26th is received and I thank you for the suggestions it contains – but I do not feel myself at liberty to go out of the circuit to appoint a judge.  The names of (Edward) King of Pennsylvania and (Ruben) Walworth of North York are before the Senate and have been there for 12 months – I am not disposed to withdraw them. The course of the Senate is in utter disregard of this duty under the constitution.  I doubt not but that all you say of Mr. James Marshall is true and that he would make an able judge, but what would New York, Connecticut, and Vermont, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware say if I went to Virginia to select a judge for them?  I find myself assailed at every corner with the charge that most of my appointments are made from Virginia and although this is utterly untrue, yet I have found some difficulty in getting even a pursership from Virginia through the Senate at this session.

     As to the Lewisport consulate, I of course cannot properly say anything until the Senate takes action on Mr. White’s nomination.  I earnestly desire his confirmation.  He has been my true friend – a man of high character and the President of my convention at Baltimore – a convention which has done more to rescue my name from the aspersions cast on it than anything else.  I cannot contemplate the possibility of his rejection.  Should such be the case I shall be greatly mortified and disappointed.  I cannot, therefore, look to a successor and I am sure that you will see the propriety of my not doing so.

     As to the Winchester post office, what can I do with my old friend Bell if Wall resigns?  Cannot you and Bowzer(?) arrange this to Bell’s satisfaction?  If so and Wall would resign, the appointment you desire could be made.  I shall strive to meet your views as to the other appointments.

     Accept my cordial salutations and be assured of my high regard.

John Tyler 

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Josiah Ware received this letter from President John Tyler on December 28, 1844.  Unlike the letter written in 1842, this one was signed by the President himself.  It is interesting to note, however, that Tyler just signs his name and does not add his title to the letter.

As mentioned in the background information, Tyler’s Presidency was fraught with dissention and bitterness.  He mentions that very thing when he writes “I find myself assailed at every corner with the charge that most of my appointments are made from Virginia and although this is utterly untrue, yet I have found some difficulty in getting even a pursership  from Virginia through the Senate at this session.”  ** A purser is any paymaster or a cashier.

He also mentioned that “the names of King of Pennsylvania and Walworth of North York are before the Senate and have been there for 12 months – I am not disposed to withdraw them.”   Of course, we now know that although he nominated these men (along with John Spencer & John Read) all of them were rejected by the Senate. Edward King was even rejected twice.  President Tyler definitely struggled with getting anything passed by the Senate during his time in office.

Josiah Ware was quite a political figure even in the early 1800’s and consequently associated with a lot of high ranking politicians in Washington most of his life.  It was written in the book entitled A Separate Place by Warren R. Hofstra that in 1833 “Josiah W. Ware, Francis Beverley Whiting, and James Bell agreed to act as a committee to delineate east Frederick’s grievances and determine if they merited division of the county.”   It was also recorded in his obituary written in 1883, “No man labored harder and was more instrumental than Col. Ware in getting the legislature to authorize the formation of the present county of Clarke, which was done, we believe, in the year 1835.”  In yet another book  entitled  A History of Shenandoah County Virginia, it is recorded that “the list of justices from the first commission of the peace issued by the governor in 1836 includes Josiah W. Ware.”  Josiah was only in his early 30’s at this time and it was the beginning of a lifelong interest in politics.  His opinion was held in high regard.   

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***I would like to thank Scott Dudgeon and his wife for allowing me to copy & transcribe this letter for my historical research.  I am deeply grateful.

*** Placement of family photographs and visual graphics accompanying this piece are the fine work of John Reagan who has been an invaluable help in setting up a website for me entitled Ware Genealogy at www.waregenealogy.com. I will forever be grateful for his expertise and kindness. 

 

REFERENCES:

Microfilm copy of the obituary of Josiah William Ware.

A SEPARATE  PLACE (THE FORMATION OF CLARKE COUNTY, VIRGINIA) Written by: Warren R. Hofstra  published by the Clarke County Sesquicentennial Committee, White Post, Virginia   - 1986

A History of Shenandoah County Virginia by: John Wayland, PhD  Shenandoah Publishing House  Strasburg, Va.   Copyright 1927 


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