America's National Treasure

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vellum—for inclusion in historian Peter Force’s American Archives: A Documentary History of the United States of America. Most descriptions date the “Force” printing to 1848, when American Archives Series V, Volume I, which included the folded Declarations, was finally published. But Force had already procured the Declaration facsimiles 15 years earlier when Congress initially authorized the project and the Department of State contracted for 1,500 copies of his work. On July 21, 1833, Stone invoiced Force for 4,000 prints of the Declaration. Perhaps Force thought he could sell as many as 2,500 additional copies of American Archives by subscription. In 1843, Force received Congressional re-authorization, but with mounting expenses and increasing delays, he scaled back his subscription plan to 500 copies.

Politicking for the Presidency Did the Stone Declaration facsimile help Secretary of State John Quincy Adams win the hotly-disputed 1824 presidential election? At least three of the surviving Stone Declarations bear manuscript inscriptions indicating they were special presentations by Adams. The name on one was penned by Adams himself but can no longer be deciphered. The other two are inscribed to influential Maryland politicians Thomas Emory and Joshua Prideaux. Researcher Catherine Nicholson suggests that John Quincy Adams these inscriptions show Adams “politicking for the presidency by presenting or being ready to present Stone engravings to politicians beyond those authorized explicitly by the May 26, 1824, joint resolution of Congress.” Adams was a popular favorite in New England, but held far less sway in Maryland. In the 1824 presidential election, that state’s electors picked Andrew Jackson over Adams seven to three. But when Jackson failed to garner a majority of votes in the Electoral College, the election was thrown to the House of Representatives. The Maryland Congressional delegation, despite their state’s electors and the popular vote, chose Adams over Jackson five to three, thereby helping Adams win the Detail of the Stone Declaration presidency. presented to Thomas Emory

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