University Archives proudly announces TWO upcoming sales in August

    University Archives proudly announces TWO upcoming sales in August. The first is a 363-lot extravaganza on August 25, 2021, a general sale offering collectors our usual splendid variety of autographs, rare books, historical documents, and memorabilia. The second is a smaller, specialized Judaica sale slated for the following day, August 26, 2021. Both sales will start at the normal time, 10:30 AM EST. While the larger sale is organized by category, the smaller sale is organized alphabetically.

    The August 25th auction index is as follows: American Politics/Supreme Court: Lots 1-46; Art/Literature: Lots 47-68; Aviation/Space: Lots 69-80; Business/Notables: Lots 81-92; Civil Rights/Slavery: Lots 93-100; Declaration of Independence/Rev War: Lots 101-130; Entertainment/Music/Sports: Lots 131-158; History/Military: Lots 159-211; International/World Leaders: Lots 212-241; Presidents/First Ladies: Lots 242-349; Science: Lots 350-363.

    Our August 25th sale offers collectors a great opportunity to acquire exceptional items from the Presidential, Science, and International categories. Early American enthusiasts, military collectors, and aficionados of art, music, and literature will also find many treasures.


    More than one-third of our August 25th sale is dedicated to U.S. Presidents and First Ladies. A 1p autograph letter signed by Abraham Lincoln dated just weeks after the Battle of Gettysburg, on July 22, 1863, is addressed to Freedmen’s Inquiry Commissioner Robert Dale Owen and has slavery-related content. In it, Lincoln refers to Union General Ulysses S. Grant, the U.S. Supreme Court, and the plight of American “freed-men.” The original Lincoln free franked transmittal panel which accompanied this letter is offered as a separate lot. A 346-acre land survey in Augusta County, Virginia was drawn, signed, and docketed by a 21-year-old George Washington in 1752, the same year the future president would inherit Mount Vernon. Last, a four-language ship’s passport signed by Thomas Jefferson and James Madison requested safe passage for a London-bound vessel laden with “Ashes, Bark, Cotton, Crackers, Turpentine, Boards, Spars & Tummels…"


    Albert Einstein, Robert Hooke, and Richard Feynman headline our brilliant Science category. Albert Einstein inscribed and signed a working scientific manuscript in German around 1938 in advance of a work later co-authored by him and Peter Bergman entitled "On a Generalization of Kaluza's Theory of Electricity." A limited edition print depicting Einstein, by German Jewish print maker Hermann Struck, was signed by Einstein with a rare full signature as "Albert Einstein.” Also crossing the auction block is an extremely rare document signed by British polymath Robert Hooke relating to the Great Fire of London of 1666. In addition to being one of the greatest scientists of Early Modern Europe, Hooke also served as a Surveyor of the City of London and settled claims following the conflagration. Fellow physicist Richard Feynman’s personally owned copy of T.S. Eliot’s “Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats” was signed in his name by his beloved wife Arline Feynman, who died of tuberculosis less than three years after they were married.


    Our International category includes items from the Golden Age of Spain to Victorian England, from South Africa and Napoleonic France to North Korea and Fascist Italy. Czar Alexander II signed a gorgeously illuminated document in Russian granting a heraldic device to a Crimean War veteran and naval surgeon. The manuscript features many sumptuous hand-decorated details, including “A” monograms and the double-headed emblem of the Romanov Dynasty. Kim Il Sung, the elusive founder of the Democratic People’s Republic of North Korea, signed a lengthy inscription in a first edition copy of “Korean Historic Relics,” a book celebrating the flowering of Korean arts and culture. He wrote on the front loose endpaper, in part: “A revolutionary must always believe in people and accept the truth that he depends on people: then they will win a hundred times; but if the people leave him, they will lose a hundred times…”

    These are just a few of the outstanding items in our August 25th sale. If you miss something in the first general sale, you can always return less than 24 hours later to shop at our August 26th auction. The Judaica sale will offer unique items relating to the history of Judaism, the formation of Israel, and World War II.


    Highlights of the Judaica sale include autographed material from Judah P. Benjamin to Ariel Sharon. An autograph letter signed by Albert Einstein in German in 1921 discusses the Rutherford-Bohr atomic theory, the Theory of Relativity, and the Stark effect of electricity. An archive of thirteen letters handwritten on fragile prison tissue was smuggled out of prison by Moshe Dayan, an inmate at Acre Prison in British-controlled Palestine between 1939-1941. A remarkable archive of artifacts relating to the Jewish Brigade Group of the British Army, including uniforms and equipment, will be offered in addition to dozens of lots relating to the Founding Fathers & Mothers of Israel.

    We hope you can join us for a sensational double-header on August 25th and August 26th!


    --John Reznikoff