[Presidential] Polk, James K.
Washington, August 24, 1848. 1 p. Folio on vellum. 18 3/4 x 15 1/2 in. (476 x 394 mm). Document signed by President Polk and countersigned by Secretary of War William Learned Marcy, appointing "Samuel G. Beach First Lieutenant, By Brevet…from the seventeenth day of August...1847 'for gallant and meritorious conduct in the battles of Contreras and Churubusco". With engraved vignettes and paper seal. Docketed at upper left recto. Manuscript contents slightly browned.Signed during President James K. Polk's term as 11th President of the United States, in the direct aftermath of the War with Mexico.
William Learned Marcy (1786-1857) was an American lawyer, politician, and judge who served as U.S. Senator, Governor of New York, U.S. Secretary of War and U.S. Secretary of State. He negotiated the Gadsden Purchase, the last major acquisition of land in the continental United States.