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Petition of Andrew Jackson

Petition of Andrew Jackson/tiles/non-collection/p/pm_014imgtile1.xml
Image courtesy of the National Archives and Records Administration
Petition of Andrew Jackson/tiles/non-collection/p/pm_014imgtile2.xml
Image courtesy of the National Archives and Records Administration


Andrew Jackson served as a Representative and Senator from Tennessee from 1795 to 1798. After serving in Congress, he turned his attention to a different pursuit—distilling whiskey. In 1799, Jackson operated two stills, with a combined capacity of 197 gallons. In June, the still house burned down, destroying the stills, barrels, and more than 300 gallons of whiskey. At the time, distillers were subject to the Excise Whiskey Tax, which imposed federal taxes on alcohol producers. Jackson was required to pay the whiskey tax, even after his distillery burned. In this petition, he asked the House and Senate to refund the tax. Jackson pleaded that he “had no doubt, but a power to grant relief, in such Cases, was lodg’d in the hands of the Secretary of the Treasury, or in some other department of the Government, he could not believe that the United States, would draw Money, from the misfortunes, of her Citizens.” The petition was referred to the Committee of Claims in 1803, but the committee ultimately rejected Jackson’s request.

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