President Andrew Jackson signed military commission document conferring on George Washington McLean the rank of Second Lieutenant of Marines. Signed January 4, 1834. Countersigned by Navy Secretary Levi Woodbury. 18" H x 14" W. Col. George Washington McLean (1801-1878) entered the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York in 1818 but did not graduate. He was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps and participated in the second Seminole War in Florida. He went on to be promoted to 1st Lieutenant in 1838 before he resigned on February 7, 1839. He offered his services to the Union after the outbreak of the Civil War, and was commissioned as Colonel and commander of the 2nd New Jersey Volunteer Infantry at the age of 60 on May 22, 1861. Overseeing their training, he accompanied his regiment as it was detailed first to Washington, DC, then to Virginia, where it was present with the Union Army under Brigadier General Irwin McDowell. His regiment was held in reserve during the July 21, 1861 First Battle of Bull Run, and during the Union Army's rout and retreat he abandoned his command, traveling on horseback back to Washington, DC far ahead of them and without orders. Charged with incompetence and unfitness for command, he was allowed to resign on December 31, 1861, stating "the peculiar position of my private business, bearing upon the comfort of my family and security of my property, renders it imperatively necessary that I should return home." Source: Colonels in Blue: Union Army Colonels of the Civil War by Roger Hunt (p. 205) and Findagrave.com. 2nd item: Marquis James, ANDREW JACKSON: PORTRAIT OF A PRESIDENT. Indianapolis, Bobbs-Merrill Co., 1940. Red cloth boards with illustrated dustcover. Provenance: Private Middle Tennessee collection. CONDITION: Document with fading to ink, especially at Jackson's signature. Two small stains lower right corner, and one upper right margin, largest 3/8". Light toning. Book: losses to dustcover.
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