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Calhoun, John C. (John Caldwell) (1782-1850) to David Hubbard

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC02320.01 Author/Creator: Calhoun, John C. (John Caldwell) (1782-1850) Place Written: Washington, D.C. Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 15 June 1838 Pagination: 4 p. ; 25 x 20.2 cm.

Summary of Content: Written by Calhoun in blue ink, concerning his support for (and failure to get) a rail route from Georgia to the west, instead of through Ohio. He concludes that southern rail routes will unite the slaveholding states and change commercial and political affairs of the Union.

Background Information: Calhoun was a United States Representative from South Carolina 1811-1818, and Senator 1931-1842 and 1845-1850. He was Secretary of State under John Tyler, 1844-1845. Hubbard was a U.S. Representative ...from Alabama 1839-1840 and 1849-1850. During the Civil War, he served as a Confederate Congressman.See More

Full Transcript: [excerpt]
… I have long seen the vast superiority of the route through Georgia to the Tennessee, over the one through [illegible] to the Ohio; and at an early period, I ...pressed, with all my might, the very one, that you so strongly recommended, and for similar reasons, but in vain. I, however, did not dispair [sic]; and by con[2]tinually urging the [struck: the] Georgia route, have so far succeeded, that the Charleston and Cincinnati rail road company have purchased out the Charleston & Hamburgh rail road, with the view of uniting with the Augusta & Athens, and finally of uniting with the Tennessee River [strikeout] [inserted: through] that line. But I apprehend, that it will take a different route from the one you indicate, and I am inclined to think a preferable one. I suppose you know, that Georgia has undertaken to make a railroad from the Chattahootchie to the Tennessee River at or near to Rosses landing [struck: at] [inserted: above] the [illegible], and that 50 miles are already under contract, and the [3] whole surveyed, giving a most favorable result. Through the whole route, there is no rise exceeding 30 feet to the mile & no canal [struck: angle exceeding] under a radius of 1000 feet. This, I think [illegible] the route, and when [struck: the] a coal road the [illegible] is coupled, with other improvements made in the navigation of the Tennessee river [struck: will] and a union affected with the Decatur & Memphis railroad, will combine extraordinary advantages; perhaps greater, than any other route. A resolution has already passed for a careful survey of the Tennessee river, with the view to its improvement.

I take the deepest interest in the work, not only in a commercial [4] but a political point of view. It will do more to unite and conciliate the slaveholding states, than can be effected by anything else; and will change not only the commerce but the politicks of the Union.
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People: Calhoun, John Caldwell, 1782-1850
Hubbard, David, 1792-1874

Historical Era: National Expansion and Reform, 1815-1860

Subjects: African American HistorySlaveryGovernment and CivicsCongressRailroadWestward ExpansionCommercePoliticsVice President

Sub Era: Age of Jackson

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