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Abraham Lincoln - Pardon Signed Co-signed By: William H. Seward For Sale

Abraham Lincoln - Pardon Signed Co-signed By: William H. Seward

ABRAHAM LINCOLN
Signed pardon of Private John H. Murphy, convicted of manslaughter in the D.C. Criminal Court, also signed by Secretary of State William Seward. Lincoln was usually predisposed to leniency in punishment of soldiers, but in this case he acted on the unanimous recommendation of the trial jurors, among others. Lincoln only issued 343 pardons of persons convicted in civilian courts, making this a rare document! Pardon signed: "Abraham Lincoln" as President, "William H. Seward", as Secretary of State, 2 pages (front and verso), with docketing on integral leaf, 10½x17. Washington, D.C., 1861 September 27. Manuscript document addressed "To all to whom these Presents shall come, Greeting". In full: "Whereas it appears that at the June Term, 1861, of the Criminal Court of the District of Columbia, one John H. Murphy was convicted of manslaughter, and was by the said Court sentenced to be imprisoned in the Penitentiary of said District for the period of eight years; And whereas it appears that the said John H. Murphy was a young man of good moral character and peaceable disposition, who had entered the military service of the United States for the defense of the Capital and the government thereof, and there is reason to believe that he committed the offense out of a mistaken sense of duty and not from a depravity of heart; and whereas the Jurors who convicted the said John H. Murphy have unanimously recommended his pardon; And whereas eighteen Members of the Board of Aldermen and City Council, and the Register and Collector of the City of Washington, together with nearly one thousand citizens of the District of Columbia, have earnestly besought me to extend Executive Clemency to the said John . Murphy; Now, therefore, be it known that I, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States of America, in consideration of the premises, diverse other good and sufficient reasons me thereunto moving, have granted, and do hereby grant unto him, the said John H. Murphy, a full and unconditional pardon. In testimony whereof, I have hereunto signed my name and caused the Seal of the United States to be affixed." Document retains the embossed paper seal. Article II, Section 2 of the US Constitution confers on the President the power to grant pardons. As a wartime President, Lincoln was often faced with questions of pardon and clemency for soldiers punished by military courts. His leniency, well known in the Army, helped win the affection of ordinary soldiers (and their votes for his re-election), but was often criticized by officers as a threat to discipline. This pardon, coming less than two months after the disastrous Union defeat and disorderly retreat at Bull Run, on the very approaches to Washington, made these conflicting morale and discipline considerations even more pressing. Northern Illinois University scholars P. S. Ruckman, Jr. and David Kincaid made a systematic study of Lincoln's pardons of civilian court verdicts, and found these pardons to be motivated by shrewd political calculations as well as by his legendary kindness. As in the case of Private Murphy, Lincoln usually gave detailed justifications for his pardons, including popular support for the measure. No further information on Private Murphy's case is readily available, but it should be noted that in 1861 the Lincoln administration was very concerned about the loyalty of Washington City, many of whose citizens were suspected of southern sympathies. The President, always sensitive to the political implications of his pardon decisions, might have been loath to ignore the recommendation of so many townsmen in this case. Horizontal and vertical fold creases. Two 1" wear slits at center horizontal fold at vertical fold intersections. Lightly creased and toned. Paper embossed seal intact. Overall, fine condition.

Click image(s) to enlarge:Image(s) shown may contain our company watermark. The actual document does not contain this watermark
Please note that this item is an original, authentically signed historical document. Please do not be fooled by others selling copies/reprints as originals.

HistoryForSale is the world's largest dealer of authentic autographs and manuscripts. Our inventory contains documents in all areas of interest including presidents, royalty, military, aviation, religion, business, science, celebrities, sports, music, authors and more. Whether looking to add to your collection, acquire a unique centerpiece for the home or office, or as a truly one-of-a-kind gift for someone special, you'll find it here at HistoryForSale. Contact us today and let us assist you in finding that perfect item.
The Gallery of History, founded in 1981, is a long-standing UACC Registered Dealer, #RD110, and is a long-standing member of the Manuscript Society.

HistoryForSalesm: Gallery of History Direct allows you to offer on and purchase from our inventory, which has been collected over a 45-year period by Todd M. Axelrod, President and respected authority in the field. The Gallery of History is the largest dealer in the world with an available inventory that exceeds 200,000 autographs and manuscripts.
Preserving historical documents is important to us. Your purchase comes to you appropriately protected. Our unframed items are sent to you either in acid-free Mylar® sleeves or have been encapsulated in acid-free Mylar. Our framed items are encapsulated in Mylar to guard against organic acids, mounted in an acid-free enviroment and are framed behind UF3-AR Plexiglas which blocks out approximately 94% of the ultraviolet light.Authenticity: This document has been authenticated and is accompanied by our Certificate of Authenticity. The Certificate is issued by our parent company, Gallery of History, Inc., and bears Mr. Axelrod's signature. Our Certificate of Authenticity is recognized by every major insurance carrier worldwide and we financially stand behind it. We have an outstanding reputation for the thoroughness of our research, for our business integrity and for our service to our clients.
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Abraham Lincoln - Pardon Signed Co-signed By: William H. Seward

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