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At the Institute’s core is the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the great archives in American history. More than 70,000 items cover five hundred years of American history, from Columbus’s 1493 letter describing the New World to soldiers’ letters from World War II and Vietnam. Explore primary sources, visit exhibitions in person or online, or bring your class on a field trip.

Calhoun, John C. (John Caldwell) (1782-1850) to William McPherson

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC03019 Author/Creator: Calhoun, John C. (John Caldwell) (1782-1850) Place Written: Washington, D.C. Type: Letter signed Date: 2 July 1844 Pagination: 2 p. 33 x 21 cm

Secretary of State Calhoun asks U.S. Attorney for the District of Missouri McPherson that execution of convicted murderers John McDaniel and Joseph Brown be stayed. He adds "It is not... designed, by this interference, to create any hope of the ultimate pardon of these men, but merely that time may be allowed to examine into the credibility of [Orrin P.] Rockwell," a new witness who claimed to have received a confession from William Mason.

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