Abraham Lincoln Boldly and Fully Signs Appointment of Consul Who Would Facilitate Bond Sales In Europe Financing Civil War

President Abraham Lincoln signed this appointment for William Walton Murphy of Michigan, assigning him to be the U.S. Consul for the Landgraviate of Hesse Homburg.

ABRAHAM LINCOLN. Partially Printed Document Signed, Appointment of William Walton Murphy as Consul of the United States for the Landgraviate of Hesse Homburg, August 15, 1861. 1 p., 18" x 14" Also signed by Secretary of State William H. Seward. Blind embossed paper seal. Virtually indefectible repaired tears; general toning; very good

"Know Ye, That, reposing special trust and confidence in the abilities & integrity of William Walton Murphy, of Michigan, I do appoint him Consul of the United States of America for the Landgraviate of Hesse Hombourg; and such other parts as shall be nearer thereto than to the resident of any or Consul or Vice Consul of the United States...."

Ex. Autograph book of Detroit pianist Kathleen S. Trowbridge, the volume is the result of a lifetime of collecting. She obtained most from her own correspondence or attendance at musical and theatrical performances in Detroit, but she also benefited from private school teachers who wrote to prominent acquaintances and received signatures for Trowbridge and the generosity of descendants of Senator Lewis Cass of Michigan. Her cousin Donald M. Dickinson was Postmaster General during the second Grover Cleveland administration, giving Trowbridge access to the White House, where she gained a letter from First Lady Frances Cleveland and access to other influential people. Many other items and the balance of the book are included in this auction.

Historical Background
The landgrave of Hesse-Darmstadt formed Hesse-Homburg into a separate landgraviate in 1622 to be ruled by his younger brother. In 1806, it was incorporated with Hesse-Darmstadt, but the 1815 Congress of Vienna again separated them and added Meisenheim, across the Rhine River, to Hesse-Homburg. It joined the German Confederation as a sovereign state in July 1817. Beginning in 1833, baths and casinos contributed greatly to the landgraviate's wealth. By 1848, the landgraviate had a population of 22,800 and a total land area of 166 square miles, making it one of the smallest states in the German Confederation. The principal town is Bad Homburg.

In March 1866, Louis III, Grand Duke of Hesse inherited Hesse-Homburg, and Meisenheim became part of Prussia, but six months later, Hesse-Homburg, Meisenheim, the Electorate of Hesse-Kassel, the duchy of Nassau, and the free city of Frankfurt were combined to form the Prussian Province of Hesse-Nassau.

Ferdinand Heinrich Friedrich (1783-1866) was a German nobleman and the last landgrave of Hesse-Homburg from 1848 to his death in March 1866. A veteran of the Austrian Imperial Army in the Napoleonic Wars, he was badly wounded several times and left the army in 1822 with the rank of General of Cavalry. After the deaths of his four elder brothers without issue, he inherited the landgraviate of Hesse-Homburg from his brother Gustav in 1848. He never married, and it was clear that he would be the last landgrave of Hesse-Homburg. He initially confirmed the constitution accepted by Gustav in 1848 but revoked it in 1852 and reestablished authoritarian personal rule.

William Walton Murphy (1816-1886) was born in Ernestown, Canada West, but moved to New York with his family at a young age. In 1835, he moved to Monroe, Michigan, where he became a clerk in the land office and began to study the law. In 1837, he moved to Jonesville, where he opened a law office in partnership with William T. Howell. He practiced law there until 1861, serving one term as state's attorney and winning election to the Michigan legislature in 1844. He married Ellen Beaumont (1830-1925) in 1849. In 1861, President Abraham Lincoln appointed him as consul-general at Frankfurt-am-Main, a position he held for nine years. During the Civil War, he sold United States bonds in the European market. He afterward remained in Germany for most of the time, serving as a financial representative for several American railroad companies. He died in Hamburg, Prussia.

This item comes with a Certificate from John Reznikoff, a premier authenticator for both major 3rd party authentication services, PSA and JSA (James Spence Authentications), as well as numerous auction houses.


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