ALS as president, one page both sides, 6.75 x 8.5, March 19, 1851. Letter to newly elected Senator Hamilton Fish. In full: “The telegraph has just brought the gratifying intelligence that you are elected Senator from N. York. I congratulate the State and the country upon the result. The news came while we were in cabinet council, and diffused a general joy. For myself I feel greatly relieved and highly gratified. I know not what influences have prevailed to effect this desired object, but I took the responsibility of sending your letters to me, to Mr. [George] Babcock, expressing a confident belief that you would if elected give a fair support to my administration, & I can not doubt that it must have produced some effect. I know that in my course I have differed from many friends, but I am sure that time will show that my confidence was not misplaced.” In fine condition.
Despite the kind overtures in this letter, Fillmore and Fish were enemies within their Whig Party. They had both developed their careers under the auspices of Thurlow Weed and his political machine in New York, but Fillmore had split with the party boss in the mid 1840s. At the same time that Fillmore was vice president, Fish was the governor of New York, and the two clashed strongly over the question of patronage appointments; Fillmore thought that his office would hold great influence, but Fish disregarded his recommendations and listened to Weed instead. An interesting, seemingly conciliatory letter within the subtext of party intrigue. Pre-certified PSA/DNA.
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