Published: November 14, 2000
LA JOLLA, CALIF. – Early American History Auctions, Inc.’s (EAHA) most recent mail bid event consisted of 1,374 lots of autographs, coins, currency and Americana.
A George Washington autograph letter, signed, brought $13,800, while a Washington letter, signed, sold for $10,925. A privateer’s commission for America’s undeclared war on France, signed by John Adams, went for $6,900. A document signed by Benjamin Franklin as president of Pennsylvania made $9,775 and a Patrick Henry document, signed, realized $2,875. An appointment signed by Andrew Jackson and Martin Van Buren came in at $2,070. An autograph check signed by James Monroe sold for $1,725 and a John Tyler four-language ship’s paper for a whaling voyage brought $2,300.
A pardon of a man condemned to death for murder, signed by Ulysses S. Grant, realized $5,750. An Abraham Lincoln autograph letter, signed, responding to a request for an autograph, reached $5,405. A photograph signed by Albert Einstein and Robert Milliken, both Nobel Prize winners in physics, sold for $3,450. Other autograph highlights include an entire page written and signed twice by Confederate spy Belle Boyd ($7,475), a carte de visite signed twice by David Farragut ($1,265), an autograph sentiment signed by David D. Porter ($3,738) and a signed Picasso original crayon drawing ($10,350).
The Colonial America section, a 1798 receipt for supplying the US Constitution brought $3,450. In the American Revolution section, two Connecticut regiment broadsides sold for $2,875 and $2,588, and a 1781 broadside, issued by Connecticut Governor Jonathan Trumbull after an attack by British troops led by Benedict Arnold, made $3,450. In Washington related material, a complete five-volume set of The Life of George Washington by John Marshall, realized $5,175.
In Civil War-era material, a high-grade Scott restrike of the 1861 Confederate half dollar went for $5,175. An 1852 broadside for a slave auction sold for $3,738 and an 1861 New Hampshire “Dog Tag” in brass came in at $1,610. An Alexander Gardner photograph of the hanging of the Lincoln conspirators brought $2,070 and a beautiful beadwork Lincoln mourning ribbon sold for $1,150.
A 1775 $20 “Marbled Border” note sold for $2,013 and a 1778 uncut sheet of high denomination notes brought $1,610. A 1778 Georgia issue $20 “Rattlesnake” vignette reached $1,265. A 1720 Bank Royale 1000 Livres John Law issue came in at $2,588. A 1771 North Carolina complete uncut sheet of three notes realized $1,116 and a 1776 coiled rattlesnake $20 “Don’t Tread On Me,” also from North Carolina, finished at $1,150. A 1787 New Jersey Copper, “Running Fox,” Maris 77-dd, graded VF-20, made $1,323. In Washington Coinage, a 1783 Washington Cent, Small Military Bust, Engrailed Edge, Baker 4-B, choice uncirculated, brought $2,818 and a 1791 Washington Large Eagle Cent, PCGS grade Mint State-64 Brown, sold for $2,070. In Fugio Cents, a 1787 Pointed Rays/United States, Newman 18-H.1, graded EF-40 went for $1,035.
Confederate Currency was represented by a Confederate 1861 $50 Montgomery issue note, T-4, Criswell 4, which sold for $10,450; a Large Size Currency by an undated (circa 1865) “Greenbacks for Bonds” broadsheet, which reached $3,450; Error Notes by the only known Gem-65 Second Seal Error, FR-61-A, series 1862, $5 note, which fetched $6,325; and a James Buchanan Indian peace medal in silver, EF, Julian IP-34, which brought $14,375.
An example of encased postage, a 1 cent “Mendum’s Family Wine,” rated rarity-$, brought $1,265. In stamps, a complete set of 1893 Columbian card proofs made $1,265. A 1775 mezzotint by John Boydell of “William Penn’s Treaty with the Indians” realized $1,725. A rare engraving of John Paul Jones by Carl Guttenberg, circa 1780, sold for $1,840. An 1829 textile featuring portraits of the first seven Presidents, made $2,530 and an 1812 sampler from Pennsylvania brought $1,438. A cased pair of English percussion pistols with accessories, circa 1850, sold for $2,013 and an antique Winchester Model 1873 carbine brought $2,760. Four engraved sheets from Popple’s 1733 Map of the British Empire in America reached $3,450, and Lyman Brown’s “Seven Barks Pictorial Map of the United States,” 1888, realized $1,150. An 1860 “National Political Chart & Map of the United States” sold for $3,450.
Prices quoted include a 15 percent buyers premium.
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