VAN BUREN, MARTIN. 1782-1862.
Autograph Letter Signed as Vice-President ("M Van Buren"), 4 pp recto and verso, 4to (conjoined leaves), March 9, 1833, to Attorney General Benjamin F. Butler, about fine condition.
Provenance: Forbes Collection (Christie's New York, October 9, 2002, lot 72).
"EVERY EYE IS DIRECTED TOWARDS S. CAROLINA..." THE NEWLY-ELECTED V.P. DESCRIBES THE PASSAGE OF THE FORCE BILL DURING THE NULLIFICATION CRISIS." In 1832 South Carolina attempted to delcare that the federal Tariffs of 1828 and 1832 were unconstitutional and therefore null and void within the state's sovereign boundaries. Many Southerners had expected that with Andrew Jackson's election the controversial tariffs would be repealed or renegotiated, but, in the event, Jackson issued the Force Bill, authorizing the President to use military forces against South Carolina.
In part, "I am ashamed of myself for not having written to you before but you know how it is with me in this respect, and in addition to other obstacles I have for the last two weeks been afflicted with a cold which would have put me to bed but for the exciting scenes through which we have passed ... I witnessed a very general disposition on the part of the rejectors to be civil. Most of them came up to me & shook hands. With Webster that ceremony did not take place until the inauguration ball ... Every eye is directed to S. Carolina. Her delegation went off in a great rage in consequence of the passage of the enforcement Bill by so unprecedented a majority. Her course is not certain but my impression is that she will revoke her ordinance but denounce bitterly the enforcement law[?] and probably nullify it although such madness is not probable...."