ADAMS, John (1735-1826). Autograph letter signed ("John Adams") as President, to "His Excellency Arthur St. Clair, Governor of the Territory North West of the River Ohio," Quincy, [Massachusetts], 2 September 1798. 1 page, folio, neatly inlaid, two small tears at right-hand edge (affecting two letters in one word of closing), narrow strip of discoloration along top.
THE PRESIDENT ACKNOWLEDGES THE SALUTE OF A FRONTIER CAVALRY UNIT. St. Clair (1736-1818), a former Continental Army officer and President of the Continental Congress, was the first Governor of the North-West Territory, appointed in 1787, but was removed from office by Jefferson in 1802 for criticisms of legislation relating to the admission of Ohio. Adams writes: "I received but two or three days ago your favour of the 30th of July, inclosing an Address of the Officers and Privates of a Troop of Horse, organized and equipped in Cincinnati. I perceive with Joy and Pride a Spirit of Patriotism and a degree of Unanimity prevailing in our Country which...cannot fail to insure its Safety and Serve its Prosperity. I thank you, Sir, for the obliging part you have taken in transmitting this Address and ask...you to convey a few Words by way of answer...in any manner you shall judge most agreeable...."
Despite his optimistic allusions to the "unanimity prevailing in our Country," Adams's single term as President would prove highly fractious, as exemplified by the Alien & Sedition Acts, adopted just prior to this letter, largely the fruit of Anti-Republican sentiments following the "X,Y,Z" Affair.