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Title:[Letter] 1843 Dec. 21, Columbia [to] John P. Heiss, Nashville, Tennessee / James K. Polk : a machine readable transcription of an image
Author:Polk, James K.

This work is the property of the Tennessee State Library and Archives, Nashville, TN. It may be used freely by individuals for research, teaching, and personal use as long as this statement of availability is included in the text. For all other use contact the Tennessee State Library and Archives, 403 Seventh Avenue North, Nashville, TN 37243-0312. (615) 741-2764.

Date: December 21, 1843
Extent: 4p
Summary:This is a letter dated December 21, 1843 from James K Polk to John P Heiss. Polk marks the letter as confidential as he explains the importance of selecting the appropriate editor for a paper called the "Union." He says the paper would be a strategic voice for the Democratic party in the state of Tennessee, and that the public must remain unaware of what is being arranged by the parties. Polk would go on to become the 11th president of the United States in 1845.
Collection:Heiss Papers

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Decr [December] 21st -1843- confidential My Dear Sir!

I have received your letter of yesterday I am very anxious for the reasons assigned to Mr [Mister] Hogan and yourself__ that the Union should be made a more vigorous and efficient paper, than I fear Mr [Mister] Hogan's present state of health will enable him to make it. If Mr H [Hagar] desires to sell his interest and and you should become the purchaser__ you ask my opinion whether the Democratic party would assist you personally as they proposed a few days ago to assist the firm jointly.__ I have good reason to believe that they would. I have no reason to believe that they would not.__ As a member of the party- I can say - that the change if made - by the neutral assent of Mr [Mister] Hogan and yourself will be entirely satisfactory to me, and especially as you prepare - to leave to your Democratic friends, the selection of the Editor - if they will contribute the amount named a few days ago, and that you will pay him a fair salary__. I would much prefer this arrangement, - to see Mr H. sell his interest to a third person whose future course in conducting the establishment - might be uncertain, and indeed such as to injure the cause. The

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Editor [added: who is] to be preferred above all others,__ for the coming contest__ is our friend Laughlin. He has talents and experience, is perfectly familiar with the politics of the state and the Union,__ and is extensively known as a sound democrat; In his hands__ I doubt not the patronage of The paper would [added: be] greatly increased and the cause advanced. What we want is a sound__ and able Democratic paper__ as a reliable organ of the party in the state.__ He would make it say whilst some others into whose hands it might pass, might not.__ It is a matter of importance,__ that whatever arrangement is made should be speedily made. The public must know nothing of what is contemplated, until it is consumated [consummated]__ and arranged by the parties.__ In whatever is done I must urge__ that Laughlin's services be secured during the canvass of the next year.

After closing this letter, I will envelope it to genl [General] Armstrong.__ that it may go directly into your hands,__ and not run the risk of falling into the general package for your office [added: and run the risk of being opened by your clerk] .__ I would mention to Armstrong its general purport, and of course confidentuality [confidentiality], and desire that you will have an early interview with him.__ Any arrangement agreed upon between you and him, with Hogan's assent will be agreeable

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to me as a member of the party.__

You see our paper here has taken ground for V Buren [Van Buren] I mentioned to Hogan and yourself the propriety of the Union's doing The same things:__ to which I understood you both to assent.__ Since my return home I am the more confirmed in the views then expressed.__ A.V. Brown writes under date of the 9th inst [instant] "The relative strength is estimated as "follows__, Calhoun 24 or 25, Buchanan 11 or 12 1/2 Johnsons 3 or 4__ Cass none, not one I believe unless the Michigan men be counted for him: all the rest for Van-Buren". Cave Johnson, writes under date of the 11th" All the fragments of our party seem likely to unite upon Van-Buren, make his nomination unanimous, and each party seek the succession__ by distinguished services in his behalf." You can if you choose shew [show] this letter to Mr Hogan, who is my friend,__ and I would do, or advise nothing that would be prejudiced to his interests. I sincerely regret his feeble state of health.__ Shew it to no one else unless it be to Hogan and Armstrong, __ and that in the same confidence, that it is written to you.__

I am Very Truly Your friend
James K Polk
[added: John P. Heiss Esqr [Esquire] Nashville Tennessee P.S. I have said to Armstrong that you would shew him this letter. Yrs [Yours]. &c [and et cetera].__]

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John P. Heiss Esqr Nashville Tennessee

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