University Archives June 26, 2024 Sale Now Online!

    University Archives will present Rare Autographs, Manuscripts, Books & Space Memorabilia on June 26, 2024 at 10:00 AM EDT. The earlier start time is a concession to the monumental size - over 500 lots - of our first sale of the summer. We’re proud to announce that, once again, we’ve been chosen to catalog and offer at auction items from the prestigious Forbes Collection. University Archives regulars will recall that we last offered items deaccessioned from the Forbes Collection four years ago. We’re delighted to present you with more phenomenal ex-Forbes items in our June sale, with additional pieces to come throughout the rest of 2024. Highlighted collecting categories of our June sale include U.S. Presidential, Aviation / Space, Music, Entertainment, Early America, Military, and Sports, but these are just a few!

    U.S. Presidential

    Lot 62 is a haunting item of presidential memorabilia: a carte de visite of Abraham Lincoln signed by him as President as “A. Lincoln” along the bottom, and PSA/DNA graded GEM MT 10. The original photograph was taken by Anthony Berger on February 9, 1865, and we know from a handwritten inscription verso that the carte de visite was presented to a well-wisher on March 25, 1865, less than three weeks before Lincoln’s assassination. As such, this carte de visite may have been one of the last photographs that Lincoln ever signed. With outstanding provenance from PSA/DNA, Charles Hamilton, and Christie’s.

    Lot 90 is a large archive of typed letters signed, White House memoranda, photographs, and ephemera, ca. 1939-1942, representing correspondence between Franklin D. Roosevelt and Robert R. Graham, the architect tasked with designing and overseeing construction of high school buildings in Hyde Park, New York in the late 1930s. As namesake and benefactor of the school, Roosevelt weighed in on design decisions, such as selecting field stone as the primary building material in a nod to the Hudson River Valley’s Dutch colonial heritage. The archive includes six typed letters signed by Roosevelt.

    Art & Music

    Lots 285 and 286 are original Walt Disney Studios animation cels, inscribed and signed by Walt Disney on the Guthrie Courvoisier stamped mats. The painted celluloid images of Minnie and Mickey Mouse were used during the production of the 1952 short film Pluto’s Christmas Party.

    Lots 285 & 286, Disney signed cels

    Lot 288 are the lyrics of Bob Dylan’s song “Tangled Up In Blue,” entirely inscribed in his hand on a leaf of London hotel stationery and signed by him at the conclusion. “Tangled Up In Blue” was the opening song to Dylan’s best-selling, double-platinum album Blood on the Tracks, released in January 1975. Accompanied by a COA from Jeff Rosen, Dylan’s longtime manager and the President of the Bob Dylan Music Company.

    Early America

    Lot 250 is a signature clip belonging to Thomas Lynch, considered the second rarest Declaration of Independence Signer, as “Lynch.” The clip was likely removed from a book in Lynch’s personal library. Ex-Goodspeed’s Book Shop.

    Lot 241 is a document dated August 29, 1782 boldly signed by John Hancock in his role as Governor and Commander-in-Chief of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, appointing one Nicholas Bartlett as commander of a 20-ton armed schooner named the Adventurous Fisherman. Financed and outfitted by Fortesque Vernon and other Boston merchants, the privateer ship, with its complement of 10 crew, 2 swivels, and 10 “musquets,” was tasked with “Cruizing against the Enemies of the United States.”


    Lot 357 is a remarkably scarce and very likely battlefield-used Confederate surgical kit owned by Thomas Stark Hemingway, Staff Surgeon of the 4th Regiment, South Carolina Cavalry. The kit is nearly intact and contains more than 60 German steel instruments including probes, clamps, scalpels, and even a trepanning saw, housed in a fitted case mounted by a brass plaque engraved “T.S. Hemingway Surgeon.” Col. B. Huber Rutledge’s 4th Regiment fought with the Army of Northern Virginia, the Army of Tennessee, and in the Department of Tennessee and Georgia. It suffered the worst casualty rates of all eight South Carolina regiments and surrendered with less than 200 men at war’s end.

    Lot 357, Confederate surgical kit

    Lot 345 is a 4pp autograph letter signed by Acting Adjutant General Edward D. Townsend, dated December 19, 1889, and elaborating on the exact circumstances of the capture of former Confederate President Jefferson Davis by the Union Army in May 1865. Townsend stated that Davis was apprehended wearing “a ladies waterproof coat around him, and a black shawl over his head.” He speculates at the end of the letter on the possible motives of such unconventional dress: “… I think it perfectly fair to suppose that Mr. Davis tried to escape in the disguise in which the soldiers captured him.”


    Lot 466 is an autograph letter in German signed by Sigmund Freud, and addressed to his close friend and collaborator, the Austrian Jewish lay psychologist Hanns Sachs. The letter dated January 1, 1938 contains New Year’s greetings as well as a cryptic message commenting on the state of the field of psychoanalysis, in part: “With increasing knowledge of the literature nothing new will be left of Analysis…”

    Lot 467 is a typed letter signed by rocket scientist Robert H. Goddard on stationery from his Roswell, New Mexico workshop. In this letter dated July 4, 1941, Goddard recommended one of his principal mechanics, Nils T. Ljungquist, for consideration by the U.S. Navy “if and when the rocket development in New Mexico terminates or is interrupted.” Just a few months earlier, in May 1941, Goddard, assisted by Ljungquist, had completed trials for his Type P-C rocket, a “quarter-ton” loaded rocket powered by propellant turbopumps, at the Roswell workshop.


    Lot 411 is an untranslated document in Russian signed by Peter the Great dated December 17, 1717. In it, the tsar granted permission to Artillery Major Johnson Henning to obtain craftsmen from Germany, notably shipbuilders, in an effort to expand and modernize the Russian Navy.

    Lot 411, Peter the Great DS

    Lot 410 is a manuscript document dated January 14, 1646, during the middle of the English Civil War, signed by Oliver Cromwell and five other prominent Parliamentarians: Lord Salisbury, Lord Northumberland, Denis Bond, Thomas Hoyle, and the future regicide Sir Henry Mildmay. The document authorized the payment of six months’ salary to Sussex Cammock, commander of Landguard Fort, as well as to his officers and men. The sum was also earmarked for repairs of the fort located on the eastern coast of England.

    These are just a few of the unique lots that will be offered in our June 26, 2024 sale. We hope to see you there!