Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility
(800) 937-3880

Lot #7011
Louisa Adams Autograph Letter Signed

The future first lady secures a naval appointment for her nephew

This lot has closed

Estimate: $500+
Own a Similar Item?


The future first lady secures a naval appointment for her nephew

ALS signed “L. C. Adams,” one page, 7.25 x 8.75, no date but circa 1824. Letter to a gentleman, possibly Isaac Chauncey. In part: "I have just received a Letter from my Sister at Mackinaw in Michigan Territory requesting me to obtain a Warrant in the Navy for her Son Joshua Johnson Boyd. As it is probable that there are not many applications from that Island the Secretary of the Navy may perhaps be able to oblige me so as to return an immediate answer to his Mother as the Season is very far advanced already." In very good to fine condition, with splitting to the intersecting folds, and small stains to the left corners from old mounting residue on the reverse.

In 1824, the soon-to-be first lady recommended that her nephew receive an appointment to the Navy. A letter dated October 30, 1824 from Naval officer Isaac Chauncey to Secretary of the Navy Samuel Lewis Southard, recommended, at the bequest of Louisa Catherine Johnson Adams, that her nephew Joshua Johnson Boyd be appointed midshipman on the United States Navy. Joshua J. Boyd became a midshipman in the US Navy on January 1, 1825.

There were allegations of disobedience throughout his military career. On November 12, 1826, President John Quincy Adams wrote in his diary: 'Mrs. Adams had told me that Joshua might be dismissed from the service, but as I have never done that with any officers, I was unwilling to begin with him. I therefore desired from Southard to order him to report himself for duty to Commodore Chauncey at the Navy yard New York with notice that upon the first act of disobedience of which he should be guilty, he would be dismissed from the service.' Ultimately, Joshua J. Boyd resigned his post on November 25, 1827, twenty days after his brother, Lt. John Quincy Adams Boyd, was dismissed. From the Collection of Dr. Lawrence E. Miller.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: The Lawrence Miller Collection
  • Dates: #1008 - Ended May 21, 2020

This item is Pre-Certified by PSA/DNA
Buy a third-party letter of authenticity for (inquire for price)

*This item has been pre-certified by a trusted third-party authentication service, and by placing a bid on this item, you agree to accept the opinion of this authentication service. If you wish to have an opinion rendered by a different authenticator of your choosing, you must do so prior to your placing of any bid. RR Auction is not responsible for differing opinions submitted 30 days after the date of the sale.