Andrew Johnson Pardons Confederate Who Left The Union

A 1p partly handwritten and partly printed document registering the presidential pardon of former Confederate James Morrow, and signed by Morrow at center as "James Morrow." Morrow's loyalty oath was recorded by Notary Public John Callan in Washington, D.C. N.d. With an embossed notary public seal at bottom center, and an uncancelled 5-cent revenue stamp affixed near upper left. Expected wear including flattened paper folds. A clerical inscription and two clerical holes can be found along the top, else near fine. 8" x 10."

The document in part:

[printed] "Whereas, ANDREW JOHNSON, President of the United States, did, on the 7th day of September, A.D., 1867, issue a Proclamation proclaiming full pardon to certain persons engaged in the late rebellion, condition upon taking and subscribing a certain oath therein set forth and hereto attached and herein inserted … NOW THEREFORE, in order that the undersigned may receive the benefit of said Proclamation he makes oath as follows:

'I [signed] James Morrow [printed] do solemnly swear, (or affirm,) in the presence of Almighty God, that I will henceforth faithfully support, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States, and the union of the States thereunder; and that I will, in like manner, abide by and faithfully support all laws and proclamations which have been made during the late rebellion, with reference to the emancipation of slaves. So help me God.

[signed] James Morrow."

The National Park Service Soldiers and Sailors Database lists an excellent possible candidate for our pardoned Confederate James Morrow. This is James Morrow (alternately spelled Marrow), who belonged to the 1st Regiment of South Carolina Artillery, a battle unit organized in Fall 1861 and consisting of mostly soldiers from Charleston and its environs. The 1st Regiment of South Carolina participated in two important mid-Civil War island engagements in and around the outskirts of Charleston Harbor. The first of these was the Battle of Secessionville in June 1862, in which Confederate forces repelled Union troops attacking Fort Lamar on James Island. The second, the Battle of Morris Island (a heavy bombardment campaign sometimes called Fort Sumter II), took place from April - September 1863.

On September 7, 1867, President Johnson issued the Second Amnesty Proclamation. This was just the latest iteration of a succession of presidential pardons extended to wayward Confederates; Lincoln had issued two, on December 8, 1863 and March 26, 1864, and Johnson had issued his first on May 29, 1865. Whereas Johnson's First Amnesty Proclamation excepted fourteen categories of individuals from blanket clemency, the September 7, 1867 proclamation restricted it to only three; those who had served in high Confederate government or military office, abused prisoners of war, or been involved in Lincoln's assassination could not partake. Johnson hoped that expanding the scope of eligibility for amnesty would further reconcile the nation.

President Johnson's September 1867 proclamations underscore the complicated nature of Reconstruction. Reuniting the nation proved a slow and agonizing process.

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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