Most famous as George Washington's spymaster, this famously hot-tempered Massachusetts Regiment colonel set fire to Charleston in 1776 when it was occupied by the British, stabbed an unarmed prisoner of war in 1777 while commander of a POW camp in Cambridge (acquitted in court martial) and was challenged to a duel by British General Burgoyne and failed to show up (though others claim Henley challenged Burgoyne); chosen by General Washington as spymaster in 1778, he successfully gathered hush-hush data about British troop movements, their numbers, arms and such; in 1793 President Washington named him Department of War Agent for the Southwest Territory, charged with controlling the Native Americans of that region as Superintendent of Indian Affairs. Item #41872
ADS, 1p, 7 3/4" X 4½", Knoxville, TN, 1797 January 25. Very good. Light age toning. "Borrowed Sergt. Throp three Bushls Corn which I promise to return," penned large and bold in brown ink and signed with "Dept. War" added beneath. As Agent for the Department of War, Henley also served as paymaster and quartermaster for local troops and militia, in which capacity he authorized purchase of supplies such as corn ("return" here meaning "replace"). An attractive example of this uncommon autograph.