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Lot #28
James A. Garfield

Exceedingly scarce Garfield presidential appointment of a New York postmaster

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Estimate: $6000+
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Exceedingly scarce Garfield presidential appointment of a New York postmaster

Extremely rare partly-printed DS as president, one page, 17 x 14, February 16, 1881. President Garfield appoints John A. Hubbard to the position of Postmaster of Lockport, New York. Signed at the conclusion in black ink by Garfield, and countersigned by Postmaster General Thomas L. James. Beautifully archivally double-matted and framed with a portrait to an overall size of 34 x 21. Intersecting folds, some light toning and mirroring of seal and ribbon to right side of document (a portion of which is over Garfield's signature, but does not affect the clarity or legibility at all), and some scattered light creases, otherwise fine condition. The gold foil seal is toned with small tears at the top, and retains its original bright red ribbons.

Garfield died just 200 days into his presidency, but hit the ground running when it came to making a plethora of appointments. Mistakenly dated about three weeks before Garfield actually assumed the high office on March 4, 1881, this oversight was most likely a casualty of the hectic environment surrounding the rigors of political nominations and appointments. Interestingly enough, when Garfield took office, the Post Office Department was the largest department in the federal government-and highly prone to corruption-an embarrassment to both the president and his Republican Party. Documents signed by Garfield while in office are extremely rare, ranking second only to William Henry Harrison in scarcity.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: Fine Autographs and Artifacts
  • Dates: #585 - Ended June 10, 2020

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