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RR Auction: Rare Manuscript, Document, and Autograph Auction

by RR Auction


1,615 lots with images

July 17, 2013

5 Route 101A, Suite 5

Amherst, NH, 03031 USA

Phone: +1 (603) 732-4280

Fax: +1 (603) 732-4288

Email: Bobby.Eaton@RRAuction.com

George Washington

Lot 1: George Washington

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Description: ALS signed "Go: Washington," one page both sides, 7.25 x 11.75, Mount Vernon, May 25, 1785. Letter to Major Robert Lewis and Sons. In full: "In consequence of your letter of the 5th of last month, I discharged Willm Roberts from his attendance at my Mill. It now is, & has been for some times past without a Miller-and as Mr. Davenport from your acct would be ready to take charge of it in about three, not seven, weeks, and not yet come, and nor any acct of him, I am apprehensive of some disappointment.If this is the case, I should be glad to know it as soon as possible, One Baker who referred to you for a character, & was employed by Col. Biddle at his Mill near George Town (Maryland) has applied to me; but considering myself under an engagement I gave him no encouragement. A person who writes the enclosed letter has also offered; but I gave him no answer, and some others have likewise made applications; but as I depended upon Davenport I asked for no character, nor enquired into their qualifications.If Davenport should have disappointed me, would Baker answer my purpose? Would Reynolds do better? Or have you any other in view which you may think preferable to either? I am sorry to give you so much trouble with my affairs but hope you will excuse it."A small note of provenance is affixed to the inside of the partial second integral page. Note reads, "This letter was found many years ago, among the papers of my grandfather Robert Lewis. I desire my son Robert will take charge of it. Laurence Lewis, February [22, 1849]." A second included slip slip traces the Lewis genealogy from Ellis Lewis (1680-1750) to Robert S. Lewis (b. 1919). Partial separations along the very fragile intersecting mailing folds, with one archival repair to separated lower right panel (not affecting any text), a few trivial areas of paper loss along folds, moderate toning, old tape repairs, a few small areas of paper loss along edges and page, one area affecting last number in date, and scattered light soiling, otherwise good condition.As the British evacuated the last of their troops from the newly independent United States at the close of 1783, Washington resigned his commission as commander-in-chief and returned to Mount Vernon. Though his retirement was brief, returning to Philadelphia in the summer of 1787 to take his place as president of the Constitutional Convention, the break did enable him to set straight affairs at his beloved plantation. Built in 1771 to increase the production of flour and cornmeal for export, his enormous stone gristmill had remained little utilized while he was at war. In this letter, he seeks out the proper Miller to run it. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from PSA/DNA.

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George Washington

Lot 2: George Washington

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Description: Partly-printed DS, signed "Go: Washington," one page both sides, 8 x 12.75, June 9, 1783. Washington discharges an enlisted man. Document reads, in full: "By His Excellency George Washington, Esq., General and Commander in Chief of the Forces of the United States of America. These are to certify that the Bearer hereof Henry Ash...having faithfully served the United States from the 12th March 1780, until the present period being enlisted for the War only, is hereby discharged from the American Army." Signed at the conclusion by Washington, and also signed by Washington's aide-de-camp Jonathan Trumbull, Jr. Bottom of the document also notes that Ash was presented the Badge of Merit for three years of faithful service. Printed on the reverse of the document is a statement reading, "The within certificate shall not avail the Bearer as a Discharge, until the ratification of the definitive Treaty of Peace; previous to which Time, and until Proclamation thereof shall be made, He is to be considered as being on Furlough." Docketing under the statement in a secretarial hand, dated February 11, 1784, reads, "For value rec'd I hereby grant and make over unto Mr. Geo. Fisher my right and claim of Six Hundred Acres of land due me from the State of New York as a Soldier in Col. Lamb's Regt. of Artillery in the Line of this State given under my hand." A further statement at the bottom attests that Ash had not previously bargained away the land. Magnificently gilt-matted and framed with a well-done copy of the reverse of the document, a large copy of the U. S. Constitution, a gold-inlaid, sterling silver portrait plate issued in a limited edition by the Franklin Mint in the early-to-mid 1970s, and a portrait of Washington, to an overall size of 41 x 32. In good to very good condition, with intersecting folds, one through a single letter of signature, a few small separations to edges of folds, scattered toning, moderate show-through from writing on reverse, some behind signature, and a couple small mounting remnants to top edge of reverse. Oversized.

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George Washington

Lot 3: George Washington

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Description: Unsigned, boldly penned partial manuscript document in Washington's hand, consisting of approximately 30 words on an irregular 4 x 3 segment clipped from a survey, no date. In part: "his heirs...upon Elk...and boarded as for...the south bank of Elk...the counties of Harrison...same, thence up the...miles, thence with a line...line which decides the...." Reinforced by expert archival mounting to a larger slip. Irregular edges and mounting as noted, otherwise fine, bright, and visually appealing condition.

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George Washington

Lot 4: George Washington

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Description: A collection of several strands of George Washington's hair, neatly tied together and affixed by its string with a red wax seal to a handwritten note from James A. Hamilton, lawyer and US Secretary of State from March 4-27, 1829, and son of Alexander Hamilton from whose estate he inherited the hair, one page, 4.5 x 3, dated September 17, 1870. Note reads, "The above is the hair of General George Washington 'The Foremost man of all the world.' Presented to Mr. Charles I. Illious by James A. Hamilton." Also accompanied by a short note of provevance from Anne H. Wharton, author and founder of the Colonial Dames of America, dated November 1919. Mrs. Wharton writes:This lock of General Washington's hair came to me from my aunt, Mrs. Charles Illius, prior to 1900." Matted and framed with an engraved portrait of Washington to an overall size of 12 x 20. A supreme example, and highly uncommon as it came from the estate of his protégé, Alexander Hamilton, who served under him during the American Revolution and went on to become the First Secretary of State in Washington's Administration. It can be surmised that this lock of hair was a gift from Washington to Hamilton, making it a stellar association piece.

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John Adams

Lot 5: John Adams

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Description: Handwritten endorsement, signed "J. Adams," at the bottom of a partly-printed document, one page, 7.25 x 10.5, dated December 11, 1769. Document commands the Suffolk County Sherriff to summon William Cooper to the Inferior Court of Common Pleas concerning a suit brought by Mary Williams and his failure of payment. At the bottom Adams writes, "And the said William Cooper comes and defends &c and reserving Liberty of pleading anew at the Superior Court says the writing declared on is not his Deed." Document is affixed to a mount along with a matted color portrait to an overall size of 16.5 x 32. Intersecting folds and some scattered staining, otherwise very good condition; the document appears to have been reassembled from three disjointed pieces, but has not been examined out of the frame. All of Adams's writing and the signature are quite bold and pronounced and mostly unaffected by any physical flaws. Oversized.

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