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Jackson, Andrew (1767-1845) to James Monroe

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC00151 Author/Creator: Jackson, Andrew (1767-1845) Place Written: Nashville, Tennessee Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 23 October 1816 Pagination: 3 p. : address : docket ; 26 x 20 cm

Summary of Content: Writes to Secretary of State Monroe after his successful treaty negotiations with the Cherokee and Chickasaw regarding "their claim South of the Tennessee that interferes with the [C]reek cession." Comments on difficulties with the Chickasaw, who claimed rights to lands based on treaties from 1794 and 1801. States that they "will now have good roads kept up & supplied by the industry of our own citizens, and our frontier defended by a strong population. The sooner therefore that this country can be brought into market the better." Indicates that they will create two districts and surveyed and sell the land, which will contribute to the treasury and bring in a population to defend the frontier. Having heard that William H. Crawford would be retiring from his position as Secretary of War, Jackson enthusiastically and at length recommends Colonel William H. Drayton as a man whose character "cannot be swayed from street rule & nature." Recommends against a rumored successor, whose name has been crossed out of the letter.

Background Information:

Full Transcript: Nashville 23d. of Octbr 1816
Head quarters
D. of the South
Dr. Sir
I returned from the nation on the 12th Inst. and seize the first moment from duty to write ...you
I have the pleasure to inform you that we have obtained by cession from the cherokees & chikisaws all their claim south of the Tennessee that interfered with the creek cession.
We experienced much dificulty with the chikisaws, from what they call their gurantee, or charter given by President Washington, in the year 1794 & recognized by the treaty with that nation in 1801; which not only guranteed the Territory, but bound the U. States to prevent intrusions, within the limits defined, of every kind whatever - In the treaty with the cherokees lately entered into at the City of Washington, the greater part of the land guranteed by the treaty of 1801 to the chikisaws was included. The fact is, that both President Washington, & the present Sec of War, must have been imposed on by false representations; as neither the cherokees or chikisaws had any right to the Territory south of the Tennessee & included within the Creek cession as the Testimony recorded on our Journal & forwarded with the treaty will shew, it being in the possession of the creeks untill conquered by us in the fall 1813. I feel happy that all these conflicting claims are accommodated by the late treaties, and at a moderate premium payable in ten years; and that extensive fertile country west of the county [2] of [text loss] south of the Tennessee which at once opens a free intercourse to a defence for, the lower country [inserted: is acquired:] [strikeout] In a political point of view its benefits are incalculable. We will now have good roads, kept up & supplied by the industry of our own citizens, and our frontier defended by a strong population. The sooner therefore that this country can be brought into markett the better - by deviding the country into two Districts, by a line drawn due east from the Mouth of the Blackwanes to the Coon River; and appointing an enterprising Individual to superintend the Northern District as surveyor, he can have all the lands north of the line ready for sale by the first of June next. The vast capital now held up for the purchase of this land, if offered for sale before the holders turn it to other objects, will ensure the Treasury an immense sum of money and [struck: will] give the Govt. a permanent population capable of defending that Frontier, which ought to induce the government to prepare it for markett, as early as possible.
Having learnt from Genl David Meryweather that Mr Crawford is about to retire from the Dept. of War, induced me as a friend to you & the Govertt. to bring to your notice, as a fit character to fill that office, Colo. William H. Drayton late of the Army of the U States.
I am not personally acquainted with Colo. D. but believing it of the utmost importance that the office of Sec of War should be well filled, I have for some time through every source that has presented, been making inquiry on the subject. From information that I can rely on, the result is, that he is a man of true principles of honor & integrity, of military experience & pride - possessing handsome talents as a lawyer & statesman.
I am told before the war he was ranked with the - [3] Federalists, but the moment his country was threatened, he abandoned private care, and a lucrative practice, for the tinted fields - such acts as these speak louder than words - "The tree is best known by its fruit," and such a man as this, it matters not what he is called, he will always act like a true american - whether he would accept the appointment I cannot say, but if he would, his talents experience & energy would prove highly usefull to his country - It is all important in peace & in war as you well know to have this office well filled, at present when there exists such [struck: Divisions] [inserted: strife] in the army as appears in the north, it is important to select a character of such firmness & energy as cannot be swayed from Street rule & Justice; from every information I have recd, Colo [text loss] fills this character; & is better qualified to execute [inserted: the duties] [text loss] of the Depts. of War than any other character I have [text loss] any knowledge [inserted: of] either personaly or from any [infor]mation. I write you confidentially. It is said here [strikeout] is spoken of to succeed Mr Crawford, rest assured this will not do; when I say this I wish you to understand me that he does not possess sufficient capacity [illegible] [energetic thru necessary qualification] [illegible] war officer - These [illegible] from the purest motives, that you may be supported in your administration by the best talents & Virtue of our country, that you may be hasted in your retirement from the executive chair with that unanimous approbation that has brought you to it.
to be inserted &c. [struck: Present Mrs J & Myself respectfully to your lady & family in which is inclosed Mrs. Hay and accept for yourself [struck: our] [inserted: my] warmest wishes for your happiness.

Andrew Jackson
Honble James Monroe
Sec of State -

[address leaf]
The Honble
James Monroe
Sec of State of the
U. States

[docket 1]
Octr 23 1816
Genl Jackson
Mr Rodney

[docket 2]
Gen. Jackson
Mr. Monroe
23d Oct. 1816
As to appt. of Sec. of War.

[docket 3]
Jackson to Monroe
[struck: No 14] 20
[struck: 23 Octo
12 Nov] 1816 (Curtis)
See More

People: Jackson, Andrew, 1767-1845
Monroe, James, 1758-1831
Crawford, William Harris, 1772-1834

Historical Era: National Expansion and Reform, 1815-1860

Subjects: American Indian HistoryCherokee IndianMuscogee (Creek) IndianPresidentTreatyBoundary or Property DisputeLand TransactionFrontiers and ExplorationTransportationSurveyingPolitics

Sub Era: Age of Jackson

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