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Lot #147
Aaron Burr

Seeking compensation in a land deal gone sour

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Estimate: $0+
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Seeking compensation in a land deal gone sour

Revolutionary War soldier, lawyer, senator, and vice president under Jefferson (1756–1836), probably best known for mortally wounding Alexander Hamilton in a duel on July 11, 1804. ALS, one page both sides, 8 x 9.75, November 23, 1795. Burr, then a senator, writes from New York to H. Drinker. In part: “The delay which has taken place in the discharge of your notes is very distressing to me, & the more so from Your delicacy on the occasion. Mr. Russell’s contract was a resource which I had reason to reply on & his failure to fulfil it I believe as little expected by him as by you or me. It is some satisfaction to me however that the note which you transferred & which appears to be a principal source of your uneasiness, will not be troublesome to you…. Upon the first news of Russell’s inability to fulfil, punctually, his contract, I wrote to my friend in Connecticut to urge a sale of the Tract bought of you, & have reason to believe that he will succeed in accomplishing it. Some embarrassment will arise from the undivided share of 5000 which you still hold, in case an agreement would be made for the Sale of the whole 80,000. I request therefore that you will either authorize me to sell your 5m as we may sell our own—or agree, in case of a Sale to let your Share go in, at the terms of the original contract between you & us…. The Price we expect is two Dollars—the purchase if made with be with a View to Settlement in the Spring—Payment uncertain….” In very good to fine condition, with intersecting folds (complete horizontal separation, discreetly reinforced; a few small tears and edge separations), and a touch of mild toning, soiling, and wrinkling. The sheet is otherwise clean and bright, the signature unaffected by any faults. R&R COA.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title:
  • Dates: #333 - Ended May 14, 2008