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Monthly Archives: April 2014

Rare 1848 Force engraving of the Declaration of Independence

Striking rice paper reproduction of the Declaration of Independence, 25 x 28.75, printed by Peter Force in 1848 for inclusion in his series American Archives, beginning, “In Congress, July 4, 1776. The Unanimous Declaration of the Thirteen United States of America.” In very good to fine condition, with previous storage folds, several well-done professional repairs to folds on reverse, light overall mirroring of ink, a few small repaired separations to bottom blank border, and some mild edge toning.

By 1820, the original Declaration of Independence had seriously deteriorated due to inappropriate handling and storage, creating an immediate need for a facsimile reproduction. Commissioned by John Quincy Adams, William J. Stone engraved a copperplate by lifting ink directly from the original and creating a perfect copy. He printed 201 before placing the plate in storage for safekeeping. Twenty years later, in 1843, Peter Force was commissioned by Congress to print a series of books—now known as the American Archives—featuring the founding documents of the United States. For the occasion, the Stone engraving was removed from storage and used to produce new copies on rice paper, distinguished from the original by an engraving in the lower left corner “W.J. Stone S.C. Washn.” Printed in 1848, each copy was folded into the first volume of the fifth series of books. After printing the plate was again retired, now residing with the original Declaration at the National Archives. Congress authorized the printing of 1500 copies of American Archives, but subscriptions for the elaborate edition were disappointing, and in the end many fewer copies—perhaps only 500—were issued. Most, including this copy, were folded and bound into Volume I, Series Five. RR Auction COA.

http://www.rrauction.com/bidtracker_detail.cfm?IN=204

 

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AC/DC Highway to Hell album signed

Highway to Hell album signed on the front cover in blue ballpoint, “Bon AC/DC,” “Angus Young AC/DC,” “Malcolm,” “Phil AC/DC,” and “Cliff Williams AC/DC.” Moderate contrast to several of the signatures, including Scott’s, and some light creases, otherwise fine condition. The record is included. Due to Scott’s tragic death in early 1980, items signed by the legendary vocalist are exceptionally rare and highly sought after among rock collectors. Pre-certified Roger Epperson/REAL and RR Auction COA.

 

http://www.rrauction.com/bidtracker_detail.cfm?IN=855

 
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Posted by on April 28, 2014 in AC/DC

 

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Thomas Jefferson Exceptional full free frank

Exceptional full free frank, measuring 9 x 7.5 unfolded, with center panel measuring 4.5 x 3.25, addressed by Jefferson to “Capt. Seth Jenkins, at the town of Hudson, state of New York,” and crisply franked in the lower left, “Th: Jefferson.” In fine condition, with a few trivial stains to the address panel and a couple larger stains to adjacent panels. Jenkins was a Nantucket whaler who founded the whaling port of Hudson, New York, and later became a wine distiller. The National Archives has one record of a letter from Jefferson to Jenkins, dated June 21, 1791, in which he tells Jenkins that he should look into distilling spirits from wine rather than molasses, believing that it could create a higher quality product at a decreased cost. In arguing that better and cheaper spirits could be produced from wine than from molasses, Jefferson hoped to lessen American dependence upon the British West Indies and to increase trade relations with France. An extraordinarily desirable free frank, bearing a particularly bold and unusually large signature. Pre-certified John Reznikoff/PSA/DNA and RR Auction COA.

http://www.rrauction.com/bidtracker_detail.cfm?IN=6

 

 
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Posted by on April 26, 2014 in Thomas Jefferson

 

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Beatles First Pressing of the Beatles Please Please Me Album Signed

A mono black/gold first pressing of the Beatles’ Please Please Me album signed on the back cover in blue ballpoint, “Paul McCartney,” “John Lennon,” “George Harrison,” and “Ringo Starr.” General wear to corners, creases to edges and front cover, and a bit of light soiling to back cover, otherwise fine condition. All of the signatures are large and quite bold, and the record is included. Accompanied by a letter of authenticity from noted Beatles expert Frank Caiazzo, in part, “These signatures were obtained at the famous Cavern Club in Liverpool on April 12, 1963, when The Beatles headlined an 8 hour Rhythm and Blues Marathon…the signatures were obtained by a helper working that day at the club, roughly 3 weeks after the album’s March 22nd release date, and these are large, excellent representative examples of each from this period.” The employee who obtained the signatures had given Neil Aspinall a hand in moving equipment into the club for their show; after bringing the band refreshments at Aspinall’s request—making tea for Ringo and bringing Coca-Colas for McCartney, Lennon, and Harrison—the young man was too shy to ask the musicians for their autographs, so Aspinall asked them to sign the album for him. Each signed, with McCartney signing last before handing it back. This show marked the Beatles’ second-to-last performance at the Cavern Club—four months later, on August 3rd, the band would play their 292nd and final show there, saying farewell to the venue that had given them their start. Pre-certified Roger Epperson/REAL and RR Auction COA.

 

http://www.rrauction.com/bidtracker_detail.cfm?IN=858

 
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Posted by on April 25, 2014 in Beatles

 

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Sinking of the Titanic Memorial Edition

Two hardcover copies, one blue and one green, of the Sinking of the Titanic: Thrilling Stories Told by Survivors, Memorial Editions, by J. Henry Mowbry, Minter Co., Harrisburg, 1912. Both copies feature an artist’s rendition of the Olympic as the Titanic on the cover. Both copies have loose, but intact hinges, and green cover has sunning along the spine and left and bottom edge of the front. Accompanied by several vintage clippings regarding the Titanic. RR Auction COA.

 

http://www.rrauction.com/bidtracker_detail.cfm?IN=156

 
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Posted by on April 24, 2014 in Titanic

 

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Thomas Hewitt Titanic Passenger Ring Recovered

An 18k gold gentlemen’s signet ring (.30 kt), recovered from the body of Titanic bedroom steward Thomas Hewitt. This ring was recovered from Hewitt’s body, No. 168, by the Mackay-Bennett and is documented in the inventory of his possessions. Thomas was on board the Titanic for her delivery trip to Southampton, and he quickly signed on again for the maiden voyage. After the recovery of his body, he was buried at sea on April 24, 1912. Provenance: Hewitt Family; Henry Aldridge, May 2011 RR Auction COA.

 

http://www.rrauction.com/bidtracker_detail.cfm?IN=26

 
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Posted by on April 22, 2014 in Titanic

 

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Original New York Times photo of two Titanic survivors

Original vintage 9.75 x 7.5 New York Times/American Press Association press photo of two Titanic survivors coming off the Carpathia and surrounded by a throng of reporters on April 17, 1912. Reverse bears a New York Times stamp as well as several other date stamps. Paper loss to top edge and corners, a few small edge tears, and light overall creasing and wrinkling, otherwise very good condition. Provenance: Caren Archive, New York Times.

The radio operators on Carpathia were so busy transmitting messages from survivors to their families, a task Carpathia’s captain felt took priority, relatively little official information came from Carpathia during this period. The U.S. government was so anxious for information and a list of survivors (President Taft’s military aide had been on the ship) that it dispatched the U.S.S. Chester in an attempt to make radio contact with Carpathia in hopes of getting the requested information. The press, too, had been waiting for information and had attempted to solicit passengers and crew to provide exclusives while the ship was still at sea. Some reporters even planned to get onto the ship before it reached New York Harbor. This photo represents a culmination of the press’s tenacious efforts to gather as much information about what happened before their competition did. An original photograph of Titanic passengers just as they disembarked the rescue ship depicts a rare scene indeed! RR Auction COA.

 

http://www.rrauction.com/bidtracker_detail.cfm?IN=104

 
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Posted by on April 21, 2014 in Titanic

 

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