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Please observe, however, that I do not yet say that it

posting time:2023-12-06 23:04:53

Wilkinson's chief aids were the Irishmen, O'Fallon, Nolan, and Powers. Through Nolan, he also vended Spanish secrets. He sold, indeed, whatever and whomever he could get his price for. So clever was he that he escaped detection, though he was obliged to remove some suspicions. He succeeded Wayne as commander of the regular army in 1796. He was one of the commissioners to receive Louisiana when the Purchase was arranged in 1803. He was still on the Spanish pay roll at that time. Wilkinson's true record came to light only when the Spanish archives were opened to investigators.

Please observe, however, that I do not yet say that it

There were British agents also in the Old Southwest, for the dissatisfaction of the Western men inspired in Englishmen the hope of recovering the Mississippi Basin. Lord Dorchester, Governor of Canada, wrote to the British Government that he had been approached by important Westerners; but he received advice from England to move slowly. For complicity in the British schemes, William Blount, who was first territorial Governor of Tennessee and later a senator from that State, was expelled from the Senate.

Please observe, however, that I do not yet say that it

Surely there was never a more elaborate network of plots that came to nothing! The concession to Americans in 1796 of the right of navigation on the Mississippi brought an end to the scheming.

Please observe, however, that I do not yet say that it

In the same year Tennessee was admitted to the Union, and John Sevier was elected Governor Sevier's popularity was undiminished, though there were at this time some sixty thousand souls in Tennessee, many of whom were late comers who had not known him in his heyday. His old power to win men to him must have been as strong as ever, for it is recorded that he had only to enter a political meeting--no matter whose--for the crowd to cheer him and shout for him to "give them a talk."

This adulation of Sevier still annoyed a few men who had ambitions of their own. Among these was Andrew Jackson, who had come to Jonesborough in 1788, just after the collapse of the State of Franklin. He was twenty-one at that time, and he is said to have entered Jonesborough riding a fine racer and leading another, with a pack of hunting dogs baying or nosing along after him. A court record dated May 12, 1788, avers that "Andrew Jackson, Esq. came into Court and produced a licence as an Attorney With A Certificate sufficiently Attested of his Taking the Oath Necessary to said office and Was admitted to Practiss as an Attorney in the County Courts." Jackson made no history in old Watauga during that year. Next year he moved to Nashville, and one year later, when the Superior Court was established (1790), he became prosecuting attorney.

The feud between Jackson and Sevier began about the time that Tennessee entered the Union. Jackson, then twenty-nine, was defeated for the post of Major General of the Militia through the influence which Sevier exercised against him, and it seems that Jackson never forgave this opposition to his ambitions. By the close of Sevier's third term, however, in 1802, when Archibald Roane became Governor, the post of Major General was again vacant. Both Sevier and Jackson offered themselves for it, and Jackson was elected by the deciding vote of the Governor, the military vote having resulted in a tie. A strong current of influence had now set in against Sevier and involved charges against his honor. His old enemy Tipton was still active. The basis of the charges was a file of papers from the entry-taker's office which a friend of Tipton's had laid before the Governor; with an affidavit to the effect that the papers were fraudulent. Both the Governor and Jackson believed the charges. When we consider what system or lack of system of land laws and land entries obtained in Watauga and such: primitive communities--when a patch of corn sealed a right and claims were made by notching trees with tomahawks--we may imagine that a file from the land office might appear easily enough to smirch a landholder's integrity. The scandal was, of course, used in an attempt to ruin Sevier's candidacy for a fourth term as Governor and to make certain Roane's reflection. To this end Jackson bent all his energies but without success. Nolichucky Jack was elected, for the fourth time, as Governor of Tennessee.

Not long after his inauguration, Sevier met Jackson in Knoxville, where Jackson was holding court. The charges against Sevier were then being made the subject of legislative investigation instituted by Tipton, and Jackson had published a letter in the Knoxville "Gazette" supporting them. At the sight of Jackson, Sevier flew into a rage, and a fiery altercation ensued. The two men were only restrained from leaping on each other by the intervention of friends. The next day Jackson sent Sevier a challenge which Sevier accepted, but with the stipulation that the duel take place outside the State. Jackson insisted on fighting in Knoxville, where the insult had been offered. Sevier refused. "I have some respect," he wrote, "for the laws of the State over which I have the honor to preside, although you, a judge, appear to have none." No duel followed; but, after some further billets-doux, Jackson published Sevier as "a base coward and poltroon. He will basely insult but has not the courage to repair the wound." Again they met, by accident, and Jackson rushed upon Sevier with his cane. Sevier dismounted and drew his pistol but made no move to fire. Jackson, thereupon, also drew his weapon. Once more friends interfered. It is presumable that neither really desired the duel. By killing Nolichucky Jack, Jackson would have ended his own career in Tennessee--if Sevier's tribe of sons had not, by a swifter means, ended it for him. At this date Jackson was thirty-six. Sevier was fifty-eight; and he had seventeen children.

The charges against Sevier, though pressed with all the force that his enemies could bring to bear, came to nothing. He remained the Governor of Tennessee for another six years--the three terms in eight years allowed by the constitution. In 1811 he was sent to Congress for the second time, as he had represented the Territory there twenty years earlier. He was returned again in 1813. At the conclusion of his term in 1815 he went into the Creek country as commissioner to determine the Creek boundaries, and here, far from his Bonnie Kate and his tribe, he died of fever at the age of seventy. His body was buried with full military honors at Tuckabatchee, one of the Creek towns. In 1889, Sevier's remains were removed to Knoxville and a high marble spire was raised above them.

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