Albany, NY, 1868. unbound. 11 pages (front and back), 12.75 x 8 inches, Albany University, "Treason of Burr" by Watson M. Rogers, March 15, 1868 -- an overview of the events that led up to the political destruction of Aaron Burr's career, from his duel with Alexander Hamilton to his schemes to conquer Mexico and lands west of the Mississippi. Watson M. Rogers was a student at Albany Law School when he submitted this paper, a requirement for graduation less than three months later. He presents a very balanced dissertation with views similar to those of Benson Lossing and other historians of the 19th century. Rogers gives the legal definition of treason "as the giving of aid and comfort to an enemy," then poses the question: "Was Burr ever guilty of this?" He rightfully concludes that Burr's duel with Hamilton was the cause for which his political acts were made a pretext of disloyalty. But no sooner has he come to this conclusion he states, "Hamilton cannot be excused from blame. His desire to shoot Burr on that fatal morning was probably no less than Burr's to shoot him. The stories that Hamilton did not try to kill him are surely fiction." In closing the discussion of the duel he provides a fantastic quote from Aaron Burr: "Had I read Sterne more and Voltaire less, I should have known the world wide enough for Hamilton and me," virtually acknowledging that transaction to have been the political suicide of his life. Watson does not provide much information on Burr's expeditions but more than justifies this decision with his conclusion: "Soon after this unfortunate affair Burr conceived the idea of conquering Mexico, he thought to make himself Monarch as well as conqueror. Chief Justice Marshall found him not guilty. By this verdict he was a filibuster and political intrigue...not a traitor." Watson M. Rogers (1846 - 1906) was a prominent New York State lawyer, district attorney, and later a local politician. He was partners with Frederick Lansing until the later was elected to the United States Congress. Fine condition.
(Inventory #: 267974)
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