Arthur St. Clair letter to Judges Parsons and Varnum   Save
Arthur St. Clair Papers
Description: This letter from Northwest Territory Governor Arthur St. Clair to Judges Parsons and Varnum dated July 23, 1788 asks an opinion of how much power the territorial governor should have over appointments of judges. St. Clair believed that he needed more; Parsons and Varnum believed that St. Clair needed less. The one-page letter measures 6" by 9" (16 by 23 cm) and is part of a larger collection of Arthur St. Clair letters that is owned by the State Library of Ohio and on permanent deposit at the Ohio History Connection. Arthur St. Clair (1734-1818) was governor of the Northwest Territory and administrator of Indian affairs for the western territories from 1787 to 1802. St. Clair led an army against a large alliance of American Indians, led by Shawnee chief Weyapiersenwah (Blue Jacket) and Miami chief Mishikinakwa (Little Turtle), who threatened war after their land was given to the U. S. government without their authorization, in November 1791. St. Clair suffered a disastrous defeat, losing half of his men. In response, President George Washington appointed General Anthony Wayne to defeat the region's American Indian tribes, which he did in 1794 at the Battle of Fallen Timbers. St. Clair also had many disagreements with the territorial legislature. He supported the division of the territory into different states that would be admitted separately to the Union despite the opposition of members of the legislature, including Thomas Worthington, who wished to hasten Ohio's admission for statehood. In 1802, Worthington and others asked President Thomas Jefferson to dismiss St. Clair from office, which he did on November 22, thus clearing the way for the legislature to begin drafting Ohio's constitution. St. Clair retired to his home in Lingonier, Pennsylvania, and died there in 1818. View on Ohio Memory.
Image ID: Om74_1146999_032
Subjects: Ohio Government; Presidents and Politics; Northwest Territory; Justice--Administration of; Judges; Governors
Places: Northwest Territory