Manuscript/Mixed Material Letter from George T. Curtis to President-elect Grover Cleveland, November 25, 1884.

About this Item

Title
Letter from George T. Curtis to President-elect Grover Cleveland, November 25, 1884.
Contributor Names
Curtis, George Ticknor, 1812-1894 (Author)
Created / Published
November 25, 1884
Subject Headings
-  Cleveland, Grover, 1837-1908
-  Letter
Genre
Letter.
Notes
-  George Ticknor Curtis (1812-1894), a Harvard-trained lawyer, was the author of a history of the U. S. Constitution and more than thirty books on jurisprudence. His brother, Benjamin Robbins Curtis, was a Supreme Court justice from 1851 to 1857, and George Curtis's first wife, Mary Oliver Story, was the daughter of Supreme Court Justice Joseph Story, who served on the bench from 1812 to 1845. George Curtis represented Dred Scott before the Supreme Court in 1856-57. In November of 1884, several months before the inauguration, Curtis writes a twenty-nine page letter to President-elect Cleveland that offers a summation of the state of the country in the nineteen years since the end of the Civil War, giving thoughtful consideration to the causes and remedies of the conflict. Curtis believed that President-elect Cleveland, the first Democratic president elected since James Buchanan in 1857, had a rare opportunity to bring the long-divided country together and he delves, in particular, into a close examination of three amendments to the Constitution adopted at the close of the Civil War--the thirteenth, fourteenth, and fifteenth--relating to the prohibition of slavery, citizenship, and the right of suffrage, and the responsibility of the state and federal governments to uphold these principles. His interpretations are filled with historical insight and a deep sense of humanity. In his inaugural address, President Cleveland did indeed emphasize the Constitutional right of suffrage for all men and adopted the tone, if not the actual wording, of many of Curtis's suggestions. Above all, in his address, President Cleveland called for the abandonment of "all sectional prejudice and distrust . . . [and] to work out harmoniously the achievements of our national destiny. . . ."
-  Letter from George T. Curtis to President-elect Grover Cleveland, November 25, 1884.
-  Forms part of Grover Cleveland papers, 1743-1945; for additional information, see: http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.mss/eadmss.ms008094
-  Original document scanned in 1999-2000 for the former American Memory presentation “I Do Solemnly Swear”: Presidential Inaugurations (retired 2016).
Source Collection
Grover Cleveland papers, 1743-1945
Repository
Manuscript Division
Online Format
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Chicago citation style:

Curtis, George Ticknor. Letter from George T. Curtis to President-elect Grover Cleveland, November 25, 1884. 1884. Manuscript/Mixed Material. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/pin2901/. (Accessed October 20, 2017.)

APA citation style:

Curtis, G. T. (1884) Letter from George T. Curtis to President-elect Grover Cleveland, November 25, 1884. [Manuscript/Mixed Material] Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/pin2901/.

MLA citation style:

Curtis, George Ticknor. Letter from George T. Curtis to President-elect Grover Cleveland, November 25, 1884. 1884. Manuscript/Mixed Material. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <https://www.loc.gov/item/pin2901/>.