[1851 Letter concerning a Legal Dispute relating to Payment of Republic of Texas Bonds, from Private Bank Corcoran and Riggs].
[1851 Letter concerning a Legal Dispute relating to Payment of Republic of Texas Bonds, from Private Bank Corcoran and Riggs].
[1851 Letter concerning a Legal Dispute relating to Payment of Republic of Texas Bonds, from Private Bank Corcoran and Riggs].

[1851 Letter concerning a Legal Dispute relating to Payment of Republic of Texas Bonds, from Private Bank Corcoran and Riggs].

Spain v. Hamilton’s Administrator


Texas Bonds and the Supreme Court. In the 1830s, General James Hamilton Jr., one-time Governor of South Carolina, and Texas loan commissioner, loaned money to the Republic of Texas. These bonds were not paid back, but were assumed by the United States after Texas became a state. A dispute relating to these Texas bonds came before the U.S. Supreme Court in 1863, in the case Spain v. Hamilton’s Administrator.

Prior to this, in the 1850s, the Washington, D.C. private bank of Corcoran & Riggs became involved with this Texas bond-related dispute when they acted to loan funds to General Hamilton in expectation of Hamilton’s claim being paid.

A Letter of Relinquishment. This letter from Corcoran & Riggs relinquishes a secondary claim upon General Hamilton. Corcoran & Riggs hereby assigned the residual claim to Messrs. Wm. Hoge & Co. of New York.The letter is addressed to W.S. Wetmore in New York. Wetmore himself had a claim against Hamilton. Corcoran & Riggs write:

In accordance with the accompanying order [not present here] from Genl. James Hamilton, we hereby relinquish all claim upon it, over & above your acceptance of the $30,000 for our benefit, dated 21 Sept 1850, & at the request of Messrs. Jas. Robb Jr. [& Co.?] whose instructions we [indistinct] for your government…

This May 10, 1851 letter is explicitly mentioned in Justice James Moore Wayne’s opinion of the Supreme Court in Spain v. Hamilton’s Administrator. An aside, William Wilson Corcoran (1798–1888), co-principal of the firm Corcoran & Riggs, was the founder of the Corcoran Gallery of Art.


Description: [1851 Letter concerning a Legal Dispute relating to Payment of Republic of Texas Bonds, from Private Bank Corcoran and Riggs].

Washington [D.C.], May 10, 1851. [1]p. Bifolium with integral address leaf. 10 x 8 inches. Accompanied by a printed portrait of William W. Corcoran after artist Charles Loring Elliott. Folds; old cellotape mend to verso of one fold, a few short closed tears; good.

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Refs. Spain v. Hamilton’s Administrator :: 68 U.S. 604 (1863) :: Justia U.S. Supreme Court Center accessed online. Also see Oelrichs v. Spain :: 82 U.S. 211 (1872) :: Justia U.S. Supreme Court Center accessible online. Williams, ed. United States Supreme Court Reports. Vols. 66, 67, 68, 69. … Book XVII (Newark, New York 1884).


Price: $125.00