Sale 265

Autographs and Historical Documents


Other Prominent Americans
 
 
Lot Photo Description
Lot 82
  Bassett, Richard (1745-1815)., Delaware delegate to the Continental Congress and one of the signers of the U.S. Constitution, was later appointed U.S. Circuit Judge.

DS, 13" x 8", circa 1799-1801. License for a public house of entertainment, signed in below seal at top left by Bassett as governor and attested by Abraham Ridgely as Delaware's secretary of the state. Neatly folded, some splitting at edges, Good.
Estimate 600 - 800
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Lot 83
  Clay, Henry (1777-1852)., Orator and politician, Secretary of State under J. Q. Adams (1825-1829), three-time unsuccessful candidate for president (1824, 1832, 1844), "The Great Compromiser".

LS as Secretary of State, 8" x 13", 1 p.,Washington, 1825 Apr 27. Letter to Swedish Minister of Foreign Affairs announcing the appointment of William C. Somerville as U.S. Chargè d'Affaires to the King of Sweden. Includes the folded wrapper in which the letter was carried, with a mostly intact paper seal of the Secretary of State. The letter is taped by its integral blank leaf to a large sheet with biographical notes on Clay, the wrapper is affixed beneath the letter to the same sheet. Slight offset on text and slight separation at ends of horizontal folds, neither affecting the clear signature.
Estimate 300 - 400
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Lot 84
  Clemens, Samuel L. (Mark Twain) (1835-1910)., American writer and humorist.

ALS, 5½" x 8½", 1½pp. (separate leaves), Vienna, 1898 Nov. 30. Effusive note of thanks to Austrian actress Auguste Wilbrandt (née Baudius), in part "…I wish I could have been in disguise & heard you read, & not been discoverable by that great audience! - for that is the very audience all populations, whose approving applause is the most precious.) We all unite in warmest regards & thanks to you - & you must let me sign myself, Gratefully, your friend, Mark Twain.", accompanied by envelope of transmittal addressed in his hand. Fine.
Estimate 2,000 - 3,000
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Lot 85
  Davis, Varina (1826-1906)., Second wife of Jefferson Davis who acted as his personal secretary, the C.S.A.'s only First Lady.

ALS, 6" x 7" Narragansett Pier, RI, August 1891. On mourning stationery to a Miss Lanigan. In part "…very sorry to hear you had been ill & wish you could come down to 'these parts' & get a whiff of cool sea air…I am slowly steaming up the steep grade old age traverses towards recovery. The pictures arrived safely & we send you our thanks…if you read next Sundays World you will there see a review of mine…nothing to be proud of, but is one of my pot-boilers…" Davis was a controversial figure: she was roundly accused of profligacy and exercising too much influence over the President. Minor edge faults otherwise fine. Also includes a Jefferson Davis carte-de-visite.
Estimate 400 - 500
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Lot 86
  Goldsborough, Lewis Malesherbes (1805-1877)., U.S. Naval Officer, one of the original three men promoted to Rear-Admiral when Congress created the rank in 1862 [the others were Farragut and DuPont].

ALS, 4¾" x 8", 1p., [Washington], 1871 May 12. Response to request for an autograph "It affords me pleasure to satisfy your request." signed "L.M. Goldsborough, Rear Admiral, U.S.N.", boldly penned and easily read. Minor ink spatter, Fine; accompanied by an engraved portrait by J.C. Buttre with facsimile signature, all-over foxing most noticeable in margins.
Estimate 200 - 300
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Lot 87
  Hemingway, Ernest Miller (Papa) (1899-1961)., American author and journalist, Pulitzer Prize for fiction (1953 for The Old Man and the Sea), Nobel Prize for literature (1954), committed suicide.

ALS, 8½" x 11", 1p., Finca Vigia San Francisco de Paula Cuba, no date, "Dear Carl: I enclose a card [not present] from Philip: Since his drink sodden and lovely [word re-written by Hemingway to distinguish it from "lonely"] brain made him address me as Charles I suppose you got one to Ernest Thompson. But on a chance that he combined us am sending card. I'm glad to see that he's still a Captain. Which reminds me to ask you to save a place under the 18-65 law for Uncle Gus and me in our platoon.
"I wish you would shoot the 22-300 Lovell - it is the sweetest shooting gun I've ever seen. The scope is sighted in and it throws good. Would you fiend oil the rest of them?
"Merry Chrstmas [sic] Carl and Happy New Year and give my best to Norine"
[signed] "Papa" Wrinkling and small worm holes (two near signature but not affecting it) but clear and easily read, Very Good.
Estimate 2,000 - 3,000
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Lot 88
  Lee, Robert Edward (1807-1870)., Commander in Chief of the Confederate Armies (1861-1865).

LS, 7¾" x 10", 1½pp. [two sides of same leaf], Head Quarters Dept. N. Va., 23 June 1862, as Commander in Chief of the Confederate Armies. In full:
"The General Commanding announces with great satisfaction to the Army, the brilliant exploit of Brig. General J.E.B. Stuart, with part of the troops under his command. This gallant Officer with portions of the 1st 4th & 9th Va. Cavalry, a part of Jeff Davis legion with whom were the Boykin Rangers and a section of the Stuart Horse artillery in the 13th, 14th, 15th of June, made a reconnaissance between the Pamunkey succeeded in passing around the rear of the whole Federal Army, routing the enemy in a series of skirmishes, taking a number of prisoners, and destroying and capturing stores to a large amount. Having most successfully accomplished in object, in the presence of the enemy, with the same coolness and address that marked every step of its progress, and with the loss of but one man, the lamented Captain Latane of the 9th Va. Cavalry, who fell bravely leading a successful charge against a superior force [second page] of the enemy.
"In announcing this signal success to the Army, the general Commanding takes great pleasure in expressing his admiration of the courage and skill so conspicuously exhibited throughout by the General and the Officers and men under his command.
"In addition to the Officers honorably mentioned in the report of the expedition, the conduct of the following Privates has received the special commendation of their respective commanders Private Thos. D. Clapp Company D 1st Va. Cavalry; and J.S. Mosby serving with the same Regiment, Private Ashton Brent, R. Herring, T. Herring and F. Coleman Company E. 9th Va. Cavalry."

[signed] "R E Lee/ Genl"
Double-matted and framed in a 14" x 16" frame which is open on both sides for viewing and has been hinged to the front of a matching 36" x 26" frame over a recounting of Stuart's "Ride Around McClellan", and next to a map of the expedition and brass medallions of Stuart and Lee above engraved name plaques. A gorgeous display of a superb and very important document which is most likely unique.
Estimate 40,000 - 50,000

In this outstanding document, Lee faithfully recounts General Stuart's now legendary "Ride Around McClellan". Though the expedition was prosecuted further than had been contemplated by General Lee, its daringness, notably the fact that a numerically inferior force had been thrown on a long front against an entrenched foe with greatly superior artillery--not to mention its success--made a national icon of the charismatic 29-year-old Stuart. General Longstreet, commander of the Confederate Army's First Corps, had this to say in his memoirs From Manassas to Appomattox:
"(It) was one of the most graceful and daring rides known to military history, and revealed valuable facts concerning the situation of the Union forces, their operations, communications, etc. When congratulated upon his success, General Stuart replied, with a lurking twinkle in his eye, that he had left a general behind him. Asked as to the identity of the unfortunate person, he said, with his joyful laugh, 'General Consternation.'" The historical sting-in-the tail was that Stuart's ride may also have sown the seeds for Confederate defeat at Gettysburg a year later. With Lee's subsequent idolization, what may have earlier been interpreted as benign self-confidence was increasingly replaced by insubordination and reckless complacency. A year later, as Lee pressed into Pennsylvania, he would be in urgent need of information, but Stuart would be off on another of his protracted sorties. The upshot was that Lee would be driven to fight the battle of Gettysburg without sufficient intelligence from his cavalry, a short-coming many historians attribute to Lee's poor display in one of the decisive battles of the civil war.
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Lot 89
  Livingston, Edward (1764-1836)., U.S. diplomat and politician; Secretary of State (1831-1833), ambassador to France (1833-1835), opposed the administration of George Washington; drafted a new code of criminal law and procedure for Louisiana, which though never adopted, earned international acclaim for its simplicity and logical coherence.

ALS, 7½" x 9", New York, 1785 November 26. To George Washington, letter of introduction. In part "…I have the Honor of introducing…Count de Castiglioni an Italian Nobleman…a man whose conversation will justify the Liberty I take in bringing him acquainted with Your Excellency. My Mother and Sisters beg to be remembered to Your Excellency & Mrs Washington…" Dated and docketed by Washington in clear hand on verso, Fine.
Estimate 1,000 - 2,000
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Lot 90
  Pinkney, Charles Cotesworth (1746-1825)., Revolutionary War general and Federalist politician, U.S. presidential candidate (1800, 1804, 1808), signer of the U.S. Constitution.

DS, 18" x 23¾", n.p., circa 1805. Certificate accepting one David Ramsay as a member of the United States Military Philosophical Society "instituted for the purposes of improving and disseminating Military Science", finely detailed military and agricultural vignettes surround the text, signed by Cotesworth as vice-president of the Society, also by Jon Williams as president. Laminated on muslin reinforcing creases and small tears, light clearing has lightened Pinckney's signature just a bit, paper seal present but not in original location, Very Good appearance.
Estimate 1,500 - 2,000

David Ramsay, a nephew of Benjamin Franklin, was a Revolutionary War field surgeon and was also South Carolina delegate to the Continental Congress.

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Lot 91
  St. Clair, Arthur (1734-1818)., Revolutionary War General, President of Continental Congress (1787-1788), first governor of the Northwest Territory (1789-1802).

DS, partly printed, parchment, 12" x 7½", New York, 1887 October 20. Military Commission for one Jacob Kingsbury as Lieutenant in the Army of the United States. Boldly signed "Ar. St. Clair" as President of Congress. Also signed by "H(enry) Knox" as Secretary of War. With nice intact United States War Department seal. Folded in eighths but no separation, small air hole, manuscript ink mostly faded (signatures reasonably dark), adhesive on one end of verso could probably be easily removed. Very Good.
Estimate 750 - 1,000
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