Bradford, Augustus W.

March 1865 check of the Civil War Governor of Maryland

Price: $60.00

Description:
(1806–1881) 32nd Governor of Maryland (Unionist) 1862-66, served during the Civil War and paid a heavy price for his devotion to the Union. Graduated from St. Mary’s College in 1824, admitted to the bar in 1826. In 1845, Governor Pratt appointed him Clerk of the Baltimore County Court, a post he occupied until 1851. In February 1861, Governor Hicks appointed Bradford one of Maryland’s delegates to the Washington Peace Conference, were he made a speech supporting the Union. Following the conference, the Union Party named Bradford its candidate for governor, opposing Democrat General Benjamin C. Howard. Bradford defeated Howard by some 30,000 votes and took office on January 8, 1862.During his term, he violently opposed the Federal government’s interference in Maryland’s elections, upheld the dignity of the State government and defied the harsh and arbitrary military occupation, and went to great lengths to keep the State in the Union. At the same time he upheld the Federal government's authority although he differed with its methods. In September 1862, he was one of the many northern governors to attend the Loyal War Governors' Conference in Altoona, Penna. Bradford objected to the federal government’s policy of enlisting slaves in the Union Army at least until their owners could be compensated. CSA General Bradley T. Johnson’s raiders visited Bradford’s home in July 1864, and burned it to the ground together with all his furniture, library, and papers. This was partially in retaliation for US General David Hunter’s burning of the home of Governor John Letcher of Virginia, and partially because of Bradford’s "uncompromising spirit and strong leanings." He encouraged immigration into Maryland especially after abolition of slavery, supported the appointment of a State Superintendent of Schools and School Commissioners, establishment of a system of education, and was instrumental in reorganizing the militia and in assisting in the acquisition of a portion of the Gettysburg battlefield for a cemetery for the Union dead. After his retirement from office, President Andrew Johnson appointed him Surveyor of the Port of Baltimore, which he held until April 1869. He became a Democrat about 1872, and was elected one of Horace Greeley’s presidential electors that year. Partly printed 2 ¾ x 7 ¾ DS, Baltimore, March 31 1865, Mechanics Bank check #1554 completed in his hand, steel vignette of a farmer at left side, paying $200 to “Miss Bradford” (he and his wife had 12 children, of whom 7 survived their father).

Condition: Very good, slight ink smear, cancellation slash not broken through
Type:Check






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