President Jackson's Editorial Appointees

“Those who stept forward and advocated the question termed the side of the people, were a part of the people and differing only in this: that they were the proprietors and conductors of the press — in many cases purchased by themselves expressly for the purpose of aiding in the “grand cause.”. . . can we resist the impression that they were actuated by the same generous and patriotic impulse that the people were? . . . why should this class of citizens be excluded from offices to which others, not . . . presenting stronger claims to qualification may aspire? . . . The road to office and preferment, being accessible alike to the rich and the poor, the farmer and the printer, honesty, probity and capability constituting the sole and exclusive test, will . . . have the happiest tendency to preserve, unimpaired, freedom if political action.” – Andrew Jackson, 1829

As detailed in Tyranny of Printers, newspaper editors were mostly kept at a distance by the statesmen of the founding era, however much Jefferson and his colleagues may have depended on newspapermen politically. In particular, newspaper editors were generally denied something many of them dearly wanted, employment in the federal government. Andrew Jackson changed all that. Many of Jackson's close friends and advisors were involved with newspapers, and he was well aware of how important they had been in electing him. After his election in 1828, Jackson conferred new legitimacy on newspaper politics by appointing numerous editors, publishers, and writers to offices in his administration, some of them quite prominent ones. This was highly controversial at the time, and lists as long as 57 were published in the opposition press. In fact, the total that I have found now stands at 75, and will probably rise as my research continues. 


Listed in alphabetical order in the following format:


*=Nomination rejected by Senate


1.         Alden, H.O.— Belfast (Maine) Republican Journal; Postmaster of Belfast


2.         Armstrong, Robert — Nashville Clarion, Republican 1808-37, Washington Union; Postmaster of Nashville


3.         Bennett, Abraham — Penn Yan (N.Y.) Herald, Penn Yann Democrat 1818-41; Postmaster of Penn Yan 1834-41


4.         Birch, George L.— New York National Advocate, Brooklyn Long-Island Patriot 1821-29; Inspector of Customs at New York


5.         Bull, James P.— Bradford (Pa.) Settler; clerk in Treasury Department


6.         Butler, Charles — Geneva (N.Y.) Phalanx; Postmaster of Geneva


7.         Carr, Dabney Smith — Baltimore Republican; Naval Officer in Baltimore customhouse.


8.         Clements, Samuel — Brooklyn Long Island Patriot; Postmaster at Brooklyn


9.         Cole, Joseph G.— Paris (Maine) Jeffersonian; Postmaster at Paris


10.       Curtiss, James — Eastport (Maine) Northern Light; Postmaster of Eastport


11.       Danforth, Walter R. — Providence Microcosm; Collector at Providence customhouse


12.       Dauby, Augustine G.— Utica Oneida Observer 1823-34; Postmaster of Utica 1829-49


13.       *Dawson, Moses — Cincinnati Advertiser and Ohio Phoenix 1823-41; Receiver of Cincinnati Land Office


14.       De Witt, Charles — Kingston (N.Y.) Ulster Sentinel; Charge d'Affaires for Central America 1833-39; House 1829-31


15.       Dexter, Theodore — Boston Statesman; Weigher and Gauger at Boston customhouse


16.       Dickson, Mary — Lancaster (Pa.) Intelligencer (as proprietor, widow of William Dickson, Intelligencer founder and editor from 1799); Postmaster at Lancaster


17.       Dunlap, Andrew — Boston Statesman; U.S. Attorney for District of Massachusetts


18.       Eastin, Thomas — Nashville Review 1805-1811, St. Stephens/Greensboro (Ala.) Halcyon 1815-24, Claiborne Alabama Whig 1827, Pensacola Argus 1828, Key West Register/Gazette 1829-32; Inspector at Key West customhouse, U.S. Marshal at Key West


19.       Fitzgerald, John — Nashville Republican, Pensacola Floridian 1823-24; Postmaster at Pensacola


20.       Fulton, William S.Florence (Ala.) Gazette 1821-29; Secretary of the Arkansas Territory 1829-35; Territorial Governor 1835-36, U.S. Senate 1836-44


21.       *Gardiner, James B.— Marietta (Ohio) Commentator 1807-1810, Franklinton Freeman's Chronicle 1812-15, Xenia People's Press 1826-29, Columbus Ohio People's Press; Register of the Land Office at Tiffin, Ohio


22.       Gibbs, John T. — Dover (N.H.) Gazette; Customs inspector at Dover


23.       Gooch, Claiborne W. — Richmond Enquirer, Postmaster at Richmond (?)


24.       Green, John D. — Easton (Md.) Eastern Shore Whig and People's Advocate; Postmaster at Easton


25.       Green, Jonas — Annapolis Maryland Gazette; Postmaster at Annapolis


26.       Greene, Nathaniel — Boston Statesman; Postmaster at Boston


27.       Greenleaf, Abner — Portsmouth New Hampshire Gazette; Postmaster at Portsmouth


28.       Handy, Henry S. — precise newspaper affiliation unknown; clerk in General Post Office


29.       Hayward, Elijah — Cincinnati National Republican 1823-29; Commissioner of General Land Office 1829-35


30.       Henshaw, David — Boston Statesman; Collector at Boston customhouse; Secretary of the Navy 1843-44


31.       Hill, George W. — Montpelier Patriot; Postmaster at Montpelier, N.H.


32.       *Hill, Isaac — Concord New Hampshire Patriot 1809-1829, 1840-47; Second Comptroller of the U.S. Treasury 1830-31; U.S. Senate 1831-36, Governor of N.H. 1836-39, Subtreasurer at Boston 1840-41


33.       Holt, Charles — New London, Conn./Hudson, N.Y. Bee 1797-1810, New York Columbian 1809-1816; clerk in New York customhouse


34.       Hunter, William — Frankfort Palladium, Lexington Kentucky Gazette, clerk in office of the Fourth Auditor of the U.S. Treasury [see “Kendall, Amos”]


35.       Irwin, ThomasPhiladelphia Repository, 1804; US judge for western PA; U.S. House of Reps. 1829-31


36.       James, Joseph Y. — Exeter (N.H.) Spirit of Jacksonianism, Patriot; Postmaster at Exeter


37.       Johnston, Robert — Frankfort Argus of Western America; clerk in office of the Fourth Auditor of the U.S. Treasury [see “Kendall, Amos”]


38.       Joline, A.V.D.— Marietta and Washington County (Ohio) Pilot 1826-30, Postmaster at Marietta


39.       Kendall, Amos — Frankfort Argus of Western America; Fourth Auditor of the U.S. Treasury 1829-35; Postmaster General 1835-40


40.       King, Preston — Ogdensburg St. Lawrence Republican 1827-1833; Postmaster at Ogdensburg 1831-1834; State Assembly 1835-48, U.S. House of Representatives 1843-53, U.S. Senate 1857-63, Customs Collector at New York City 1865


41.       Latham, Allen — Chillicothe (Ohio) Evening Post 1830-33, Surveyor of Virginia. Military District


42.       Lehmanowsky, John J. — Washington (D.C.) United States Telegraph; clerk in the General Post Office


43.       McCalla, John M. — Lexington Kentucky Gazette, U.S. Marshal for Kentucky


44.       Mack, Ebenezer — New York Columbian (as journeyman printer) 1812-15, Owego Gazette 1815-16, Ithaca American Journal, Ithaca Journal 1817-1833; Postmaster of Ithaca; State Senate 1833-37


45.       Manahan, Joseph — Printer in Concord (N.H.) New Hampshire Patriot office, clerk for Second Comptroller of US Treasury [see “Hill, Isaac”]


46.       Marschalk, Andrew — Natchez Mississippi Herald/Washington Republican/Mississippi State Gazette/Natchez Gazette/Statesman and Gazette1802-, Surveyor of the Port of Natchez


47.       Maxwell, ThomasElmira (N.Y.) Gazette, 1834-36; Postmaster at Elmira; U.S. House of Reps. 1829-31


48.       Meehan, John S. — Washington (D.C.) Columbian Star, United States Telegraph; Librarian of Congress 1829-61


49.       Morgan, Thomas — Washington (Pa.) Democratic Eagle, Postmaster at Washington, Pa.


50.       Myer, William — New Brunswick (N.J.) Times 1815-32; Postmaster at New Brunswick


51.       Niles, John M.Hartford Times; Postmaster at Hartford; U.S. Senate 1835-39 & 1843-49, Postmaster General 1840-41


52.       Noah, Mordecai M.— New York National Advocate, National Advertiser, Courier and Enquirer, Evening Star, and the Sunday Times, Naval Agent or Surveyor in New York customhouse


53.       Norton, Benjamin H. — Hartford Times; unspecified position in Boston customhouse


54.       Norvell, John — Baltimore Whig 1813-14, Baltimore Patriot 1815-17, Lexington Kentucky Gazette 1817-19, Philadelphia Franklin Gazette 1819-28, Philadelphia Pennsylvania Inquirer, 1829; Postmaster at Detroit, 1831-36; U.S. Senate 1837-1841, U.S. Attorney for Michigan 1846-49


55.       O'Reilly, Henry — Kinderhook Herald, Rochester (N.Y.) Daily Advertiser & others; Deputy Collector for Genesee District, 1832; Postmaster at Rochester, 1838-42


56.       Phelps, Noah — Hartford Times; Customs Collector at Middletown, Conn.


57.       Philips, Samuel — Sag Harbor/Greenport (N.Y.) Republican Watchman 1826-57, Postmaster of Sag Harbor


58.       Prentiss, John HolmesCooperstown Federalist, Cooperstown Freemans’ Journal 1807-49; Postmaster at Cooperstown 1833-37; U.S. House of Representatives 1837-41


59.       Rankin, H.T. — Washington (D.C.) United States Telegraph; "temporarily employed in the Department of State"


60.       Reding, John R. — Haverhill (N.H.) Democratic Republican, 1828-62; Postmaster at Haverhill; U.S. of Representatives 1841-45


61.       Rind, William A. Jr.— Georgetown, D.C. National Messenger, Metropolitan, Washington (D.C.) United States Telegraph, clerk in General Post Office


62.       Rives, John C. — Washington (D.C.) United States Telegraph, Washington Globe (partner of Francis P. Blair), Clerk in office of the Fourth Auditor of the U.S. Treasury [see “Kendall, Amos”]


63.       Robb, David — Cambridge (Ohio) Washington Republican; Sub Indian Agent for Ohio


64.       Rogers, Thomas J. — Easton (Pa.) Northampton Farmer 1805-1814, Easton Delaware Democrat and Easton Gazette,1827-28; Naval Officer at Philadelphia customhouse; U.S. House of Representatives 1818-1824


65.       Sheldon, John P. — Cooperstown Federalist, Rochester (N.Y.) Gazette, Detroit Gazette 1817-30, Detroit Democratic Free Press 1831-33 (plus many others); Register of Land Office at Mineral Point, Wisconsin Territory


66.       Stambaugh, Samuel C. — Harrisburg Pennsylvania Reporter; Indian Agent in Wisconsin Territory


67.       Tappan, Amos C. — Wiscasset (Maine) Lincoln Intelligencer; Weigher and Gauger at Wicasset customhouse


68.       Thruston, Algernon S. — Tallahassee Florida Intelligencer 1826, Collector of Customs at Key West


69.       Trist, Nicholas P. — Charlottesville Virginia Advocate, 1828; U.S. Consul in Havana 1833-41; Chief Clerk of U.S. State Department 1845-47


70.       Turner, Orasmus — Lockport (N.Y.) Observatory and many others, 1822 +, "U.S. Marshal to take census"; collector of canal tolls


71.       Wagner, Peter K.— New Orleans Louisiana Advertiser, Naval Officer at New Orleans customhouse


72.       Welles, Gideon — Hartford Times; Postmaster at Hartford, 1836-41; Secretary of the Navy 1861-69


73.       White, Philo — Salisbury (N.C.) Western Carolinian; Naval Agent at Valparaiso


74.       Wright, Benjamin D. — Pensacola Gazette 1834-45, U.S. Attorney for West Florida, Florida Supreme Court 1845-53


75.       Wright, James — Sandy Hill (N.Y.) Times; Postmaster at Sandy Hill

PRINCIPAL SOURCE: "List of Editors, Proprietors, and persons other otherwise connected with the Press, who have been 'rewarded' by General Jackson," Washington Daily National Intelligencer, 27 Sept. 1832, greatly supplemented by my own research. (The Intelligencer list had only 57 names and much of the information was sketchy.) My research into Jacksonian era newspaper politics is ongoing and I expect that this list will continue to grow over time. It was last updated 8 August 2001.


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