ABRAHAM LINCOLN SIGNED PRESIDENTIAL PARDON DATED 1861

$12,000.00 SOLD

Quantity Available: None

Item Code: 215-14

Authenticated by the Abraham Lincoln Library and Museum in Springfield, IL, this document is a pre-printed, filled in  form, light gray in color, 9.75 x 16” [9.75 x 8” folded]--with a single with a single reverse notation [“5 Aug 1861 pardon”], handwritten in pencil, folded under. Mounted in tasteful brown frame with plexiglass, with inner and outer gilt trim, the piece is double-matted in white, and held place with archival corner holders. White card reverse backing with hang-wire.

The pardon exhibits light fold-marks and is lightly browned at the margins. Three pinprick dots appear along the left margin, with two small slight tears at fold-marks on the upper left and lower right margins. Although the paper is somewhat faded, the cursively printed script and the accompanying hand written script are entirely legible, with Lincoln’s inked signature especially strong. Exhibits dots of smudged ink to the right of the final line, below the presidential signature. A tiny sailing-ship water-mark appears in the upper left corner.

Text: printed script: “I hereby authorize and direct the Secretary of State affix the Seal of the United States to”; followed by clerk’s handwritten notation, “a Warrant for the pardon of James B. Jenkins,” followed by two inked lines below, and below that, the presidential signature, “Abraham Lincoln.” Concluding with printed “Washington,” and a clerk’s dating notation: “5th August, 1861”.

The story of the Lincoln-Jenkins pardon is outlined in an accompanying folder of correspondence, and unfolds as follows:

In January 1854, John B. Jenkins, a young attorney from Oneida, New York, was convicted of federal pension forgery and fraud and sentenced to five years in the New York state penitentiary at Auburn, New York. Soon after, led by Jenkins’ uncle, a host of Oneida relatives and residents petitioned President Franklin Pierce for clemency on the grounds that prison life was putting the young man’s health in jeopardy. But to no avail; on Sept. 18, 1854, President Pierce refused the pardon, and young Jenkins went on to complete his sentence, exiting prison in 1859. Then in August 1861, Jenkin’s uncle petitioned the attorney general’s office to recover his nephew’s civil liberties, and received a favorable hearing. The pardon of John B. Jenkins was prepared, brought to President Lincoln and signed, August 5, 1861, some two weeks after the Battle of Bull Run.

Superb collectible. Lincoln presidential pardons are scarce as hen’s teeth. Accompanied by documentation.

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