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Hermitage Febry [February] 28th 1845 —private — Major Wm [William] B Lewis ,My dear Major,
Your interesting letter of the 17th instant is received, advising that mine of the 4th. & 5th. had reached you — Before this reached you Col [Colonel] Polks Cabinett [Cabinet] will be known, and I am sure there will no one compose it unless under the terms I framed to you — should there be, then Col [Colonel] Polk must have changed his mind after he left me. "Your observations with regard to Mr. Buchannan [Buchanan] , are correct — He shwd [showed] a want of moral courage in the affair of the intrigue of Adams & Clay — did not do me justice in the [unclear: expose ] & he then made and I am sure about that time did believe there was a perfect understanding between Adams & Clay about the presidency & the Secretary of State — This I am sure of — But whether [added: he] viewed that there was any corruption in the case or not I know not, but one thing I do know, that he wished me to combat [added: them] with their own weapons — that was to let my friends say if I was elected I would make Mr. Clay Secretary of State — This to me appeared deep corruption, & I repelled at — with that honest indignation, as I thought such corruption deserved!! Mr Buchanan is a man of fine talents & if he comes into the Department of State will [gap]
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I was truly astonished at some information brought by Mr. A. [Andrew] Jackson Jr — from Nashville the other day. It was this, that Col [Colonel] Laughlin had went on to Washington had bought on interest in the Madisonian, and expected to make it the organ of the administration This if true would be one of the most fatal steps for Col [Colonel] Polk that could be taken — it would be placing him in the shoes of Mr Tyler , and Laughlin travelling on with the Col [Colonel] to Washington would place Col [Colonel] Polk under the implication of taking him on there for the purpose which I am sure was not the case. Common sense will at once shew [show] the evil consequences [unclear: that struck ] to Col [Colonel] Polk, to put himself in the attitude of providing Mr Tyler for the succession — It would split the democracy to pieces, and [unclear: redouned ] to the great injury of Polks administration — I love from the moment I heard it put my face against it, & hope I have checked this inconsiderable movement — I hope there is not truth in the rumor— if there is, there is less common sense in the movers than I calculated upon, let me hear from you. Your sister, Mrs. Leister , & one of her daughters spent day before yesterday with me— They all carry good health —
All my Household join me in the kindest salutation,
yr [your] friend.
Andrew Jackson [added: P.S. [Post Script] My shortness of breath increases — I am greatly affected — A.J. [Andrew Jackson]]