Newly inaugurated President Andrew Jackson articulates the theme that would govern his administration
In 1812, the General Land Office was established as a federal agency within the Department of the Treasury. The Office’s primary responsibility was to oversee the survey and sale of lands deemed by the newly formed United States as “public domain” lands. As such it handled the land grants issued to private...
In 1812, the General Land Office was established as a federal agency within the Department of the Treasury. The Office’s primary responsibility was to oversee the survey and sale of lands deemed by the newly formed United States as “public domain” lands. As such it handled the land grants issued to private purchasers and approved by presidents. There were frequent disputes over titles to these lands, and the Commissioner of the General Land Office was responsible for resolving these disputes.
James Allison was a Tennessean and known to Andrew Jackson during the War of 1812 as well. Allison would later become Deputy Land Surveyor in the Eastern District of Louisiana. In 1828, a new regional head surveyor took over and accused Allison of negligence and corruption. Allison complained directly to the new President, Andrew Jackson, once the latter took office. Jackson, to gain justice for his old acquaintance, wrote directly to the head US surveyor, George Graham, demanding he turn his attention to what he perceived as injustice. It afforded the newly inaugurated President Andrew Jackson an opportunity to articulate the essential theme that would govern his presidency – let justice be done.
Autograph letter signed, Washington, April 25, 1829, to Major George Graham, Commissioner Genl. Land Office. “Complaint of James Allison – Louisiana. The papers enclosed are referred to the commissioner of the general land office for his report thereon, that justice may be done. Andrew Jackson.”
This is the first letter of Jackson we have had in which he specifically mentions the primacy of his dedication to justice.
Allison’s firing stood, as there was enough evidence to corroborate the accusation.
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