185: WILLIAM McKINLEY and RUSSELL A. ALGER, AS PRESIDEN
WILLIAM McKINLEY and RUSSELL A. ALGER, AS PRESIDENT AND SECRETARY OF WAR, THEY SIGN THE APPOINTMENT OF AN ARTILLERY OFFICER (1898) Military Appointment signed: "William McKinley" as President and "R. A. Alger" as Secretary of War, 1p, 17 1/2" x 14 1/2". Washington, D.C., April 6, 1898. Appointment of Albert Simpson Cummins as Captain of Artillery. 2 1/2" diameter blue paper seal affixed at lower left margin. Framed with an engraving, a bronze plaque, and a ribbon with pin. 21" x 32". William McKinley represented Ohio as a Republican in the U.S. Congress from 1877-1883 and 1885-1891, and he served as Governor of Ohio from 1892-1896. Elected 25th U.S. President in 1896, McKinley was reelected to a second term in 1900 with a larger plurality of votes than any other Chief Executive before him. The U.S. became a world power during his Presidency, winning a war with Spain (1898) and acquiring overseas colonies (Puerto Rico and the Philippines). On September 6, 1901, at the Pan American Exposition in Buffalo, New York, President McKinley was shot by Leon Czolgosz, an anarchist. He died on September 14, 1901, the third President to be assassinated. Russell Alexander Alger served as Secretary of War from March 5, 1897 until August 1, 1899, during McKinley's first term. He resigned over criticism of his management of the War Department. Despite having been Governor of Michigan (1885-1887), Alger lacked the decisiveness required during the Spanish-American War, McKinley making decisions independent of his War Secretary, and "Algerism" became a synonym for incompetence. Alger defended his record by writing "The Spanish American War" (1901). He served in the U.S. Senate (1902-1907).