John C. Calhoun



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Calhoun was the Secretary of State at the time of this letter. He commands the suspension of the trial of Capt. Hiram Gray, who was accused of violating the slave trade suppression law.


Department of State Washington February 21. 1845 William H. Rogers Esq. N.S. Dist. Atty Wilmington Del. Sir, Your letter of the 13th Inst. respecting the case of Capt. Hiram Gray, late of the Brig “Agnes” charged with certain acts in violation of the Laws of the U States for the suppression of the Slave trade, has been received. Under the doubts expressed by yourself, and the District Judge, of the sufficiency of the papers with which you have been furnished, to authorise the commitment of Gray, I have to request, that you will suspend proceedings against him for the present. A letter was received on the 19th Inst. from the United States Consul at Rio de Janeiro, in which he states, that the witnesses in this case, will soon be sent to the U States. You will be advised of their arrival as soon as the Department receives the information, and in the meantime, to secure the arrest of Gray, I have to request that you will have his movement carefully watched. It may be proper to mention, that the US District Attorney at Philadelphia, to whom papers similar to those enclosed to you, were forwarded, has informed the Department, that on the strength of them, Judge Randall of the District Comb of the U. States, had issued warrants for the arrest of Gray, Ruhl & Gough. I am, Sir, Respectfully Your obedient Servant J.C. Calhoun

Creation Date



Washington, D.C.


United States

Creator Life Dates



Department of State, Washington D.C., William H. Rogers, Wilmington, Delaware, Hiram Gray, slave trade, Rio de Janerio, Judge Randall, John C. Calhoun

Resource Identifier


Date Digital

March 2014

Document Type



Military History | United States History


Wofford College

Format (medium)


Format (IMT)




Digitization Specifications

800ppi 24-bit depth color; Scanned with an Epson 15000 Photo scanner with Epson Scan software; Archival master is a TIFF; TIFFs converted to PDF with Adobe Acrobat XI Pro.


The original from which this digital representation is taken is housed in The Littlejohn Collection at Wofford College, located in the Sandor Teszler Library.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

John C. Calhoun letter to William H. Rogers



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