Johnson, Richard M.

Free-franked address panel to a noted New York portrait painter

Price: $150.00

Description:
(1781-1850) Kentuckian, served under Wm. H. Harrison in War of 1812 in lower Canada, reputed to have killed Tecumseh at 1813 Battle of the Thames. Kentucky US Rep 1807-19, Senator 1819-37. As his prominence grew, interracial relationship with Julia Chinn, an octoroon (1/8 Black) slave was more widely criticized. Johnson openly treated Chinn as his common law wife and acknowledged their 2 daughters as his children, giving them his surname, much to the consternation of some of his constituents. The relationship is believed to have led to the loss of his Senate seat in 1829, but his Congressional district returned him to the House the next year. In 1836, he was the Democratic VP nominee with Van Buren. He campaigned with the slogan: "Rumpsey Dumpsey, Rumpsey Dumpsey, Colonel Johnson killed Tecumseh", and fell one electoral vote short to secure his election. Virginia's Electoral College delegation went against the state's popular vote and refused to endorse Johnson, abstaining instead. However, he was elected to the office by the Senate. 1st VP elected by Senate (Feb. 8, 1837), no candidate having received majority of the electoral vote, served 1837-41. Johnson proved such a liability for the Democrats in the 1836 election that they refused to renominate him for VP in 1840; President Van Buren campaigned for re-election without a running mate but lost to Whig Wm. H. Harrison. Johnson tried to return to public office but was defeated. He was elected to the Kentucky House in 1850, but died 2 weeks into his term. 2 3/4 x 4 1/2 portion of a folded letter address leaf all in Johnson's hand, addressed to James Herring of New York. Johnson signs "Free" with his franking signature at top right. Likely from Washington, place & date illegible. JAMES HERRING (1794-1867) London-born American portrait painter. His father emigrated to the US in 1804, and became a NYC brewer and distiller. James began by coloring prints and maps, and moved to Philadelphia, where he entered into the business of coloring maps, but returned to New York, and settled in Chatham Square as a portrait painter. With James Barton Longacre, he illustrated American biography in the National Portrait Gallery (3 vols., Philadelphia, 183439).

Condition: Very good, corners clipped. Red postmark remnant at left, red "Free" in other hand under signature.
Type:Free Franked Address Leaf






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