Andrew Johnson 1865 Autograph Endorsement Signed as President


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17th President.  Autograph endorsement signed (AES) “Andrew Johnson” AS PRESIDENT, one page, 4 x 8, May 9, 1865. President Johnson responds to a letter addressed to him on verso from Union Army officer James L. Fisk, in full:

Executive office

Washington City

May 9. 1865.

Respectfully referred

to the Hon: Secretary

of War for his


The attention of the

Secretary is also direc-

ted to a communication

from Senator Ramsay,

of Minn, on this sub-

ject – [?] filed

in the War Dep’t.

Andrew Johnson

Fisk was a Union Army officer who promoted settlement of the western United States.  He led four expeditions from Minnesota to Montana in the 1860s.

The letter which prompted President Johnson’s response offers great detail on Fisk’s plans for an expedition. He writes, in part:

The application filed or presented by Senator Ramsay of Minnesota on the 2nd inst. in my behalf…as a means of affording employment to many now without it and to encourage the development of Gold Mines as a benefit to the country, that the Government will, while delegating me to resume the superintendence of Emigration with a view to colonizing, mining and developing generally the great resources of the Yellowstone and Rocky Mountain Country – making my expeditions self supporting and secure – without incurring debt or expense to the Government…allow me to obtain from any U.S. Quartermaster having property on disposal such means of transportation…as I may need to outfit the expedition paying for the same at an appraised value and sending out returns thereon…If required, I will with pleasure report at close of Expedition the results of enterprise in one form to the Adj. Genl…

Amazing early Johnson directive having taken over the Presidency less than one month earlier after the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln.  On this very day, May 9, 1865, President Johnson issued a proclamation declaring the American Civil War may be regarded as “virtually at an end” and that nations or ships still harboring fugitives would be denied entry into U.S. ports. Persons found aboard such vessels would no longer be given immunity from prosecution of their crimes.

In very good condition, small edge bites, very small strip of mounting remnant on edge.