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Sale 1117 — U.S. & Confederate States Postal History

Sale Date — Thursday-Friday, 17-18 December, 2015

Category — Free Franks and Historical Documents

Lot
Symbol
Photo/Description
Cat./Est. Value
Realized
4001
c
Sale Number 1117, Lot Number 4001, Free Franks and Historical DocumentsLouisa Catherine Adams, Louisa Catherine AdamsLouisa Catherine Adams. Widow of John Q. Adams, Free frank "L C Adams" on mourning cover with illustration of Capitol Building and addressed to Mrs. Sarah Smith Stafford in Washington D.C., neat "Quincy Mass. Aug. 5" manuscript postmark with matching "Free", with matching enclosure which is 2pp autograph letter signed and dated 1848, contents include in part: "my thanks for your kind present which must ever give use to agreeable associations with the view of the Capitol of our Union. That my late venerated husband interested himself for you I am sure, as much of his time was occupied in promoting the interests of Widows and Orphans. I trust that your claim will be successfully promoted in Congress...the feeling of gratitude which you express for him who is gone to return no more is honorable to Him, and amiable in you, and must give real satisfaction to me, to whom life has become as nought since he is removed who was life to.", some splitting along folds, cover with some wear, otherwise Fine, scarce and attractive cover and letter, her husband passed away on Feb. 23, 1848, which was only a few months before this letter was sent, the sentiments amply demonstrate her deep sorrow, ex Dr. Robertson

E. 2,000-3,000
2,900
4002
c
Sale Number 1117, Lot Number 4002, Free Franks and Historical DocumentsJames S. Bush, James S. BushJames S. Bush. Signature at end of 2pp letter datelined "Valparaiso March 21, 1866" contents read in part "The commodore thinks it necessary to remain here for a time, to protect the Am. interests against a threatened bombardments of the town by the Spanish rebels.", other interesting contents, accompanied by cover addressed to Henry H. Haight at San Francisco with "Panama 20 Ap. 1866" transit and May 14 San Francisco receiving datestamps, bold "34" rate, endorsed "U.S.S. Vanderbilt Valparaiso, Chile", fresh and Very Fine, interesting letter and cover sent by great-great grandfather of former President George W. Bush

E. 200-300
250
Back to Top
4003
c
Sale Number 1117, Lot Number 4003, Free Franks and Historical DocumentsHenry Clay, Henry ClayHenry Clay. Three covers, incl. two free-franked "Free H. Clay" and sent to the Hon. Joseph Nicholson in Baltimore, third is cover addressed to Clay bearing Blood's local stamp paying local postage and sent free thru the U.S. post office, few faults, Fine-Very Fine, ex Dr. Robertson

E. 300-400
350
Back to Top
4004
c
Sale Number 1117, Lot Number 4004, Free Franks and Historical DocumentsBenjamin Franklin, Benjamin FranklinBenjamin Franklin. Incoming letter addressed to "Dr. Franklin, Craven Street in the Strand, London", originally rated "6" pence due but crossed out and sent free of charge, red London "Free" in circle handstamp, red "JA/30" Franklin mark and "3/FE" Bishop's mark, manuscript receipt docketing "Dr. Robertson 1770" on flap (almost certainly in Franklin's own hand), some wear and one flap detached (included), opened for display of all markings and docketing, Very Fine, sent from the president of Edinburgh College to Franklin during his term as Deputy Postmaster General, which allowed him to send and receive mail free of charge, ex Dr. Robertson

E. 1,500-2,000
1,400
Back to Top
4005
c
Sale Number 1117, Lot Number 4005, Free Franks and Historical DocumentsEarhart's Arrival at Oakland Airport, Jan. 12, 1935, Earhart's Arrival at Oakland Airport, Jan. 12, 1935Earhart's Arrival at Oakland Airport, Jan. 12, 1935. 8-line handstamped cachet on commemorative cover to Glendale Cal. signed "Amelia Earhart", 1c & 5c tied by Oakland Jan. 12 duplex, Very Fine, signed after Earhart completed her record solo flight from Hawaii to California

E. 500-750
400
Back to Top
4006
c
Sale Number 1117, Lot Number 4006, Free Franks and Historical Documents2c Electric Light (654), 2c Electric Light (654)2c Electric Light (654). Tied by "Menlo Park N.J. Jun. 5, 1929 8:30 AM" first day machine cancel on cover to Auburnsdale Mass., signed "Thos A Edison" at top with the fancy flourish he always used, ties the stamp, Very Fine and rare with Edison's signature, with 2010 P.F. certificate

E. 750-1,000
500
Back to Top
4007
 
Dwight D. Eisenhower -- Surrender of German Forces. One-page typed cable announcing formal surrender of German forces at Reims, containing six typos, which indicates this was the original telegram, some faults, still a very unusual item, the typos were fixed in the subsequent formal communication, reportedly this was kept by Porter Whitney, a tech sergeant supervising Eisenhower's top secret red line, who formatted it for formal onward communication, offered on its own merits

E. 300-400
0
Back to Top
4008°
c
Sale Number 1117, Lot Number 4008, Free Franks and Historical DocumentsAlexander Hamilton, Alexander HamiltonAlexander Hamilton. Delegate from New York (Continental Congresses of 1782-83, 1787-88), framer and signer of the Constitution, Secretary of the Treasury during Washington administration (1789-95), and victim of Aaron Burr's bullet, free frank "A Hamilton" at lower left as Secretary of the Treasury on 1792 folded cover to William Webb, Collector of Customs at Bath Mass., with "Treasury Department" endorsement, "13/IV" Franklin mark and "Free" handstamp, beautifully framed behind UV-protected acrylic with an engraving of Hamilton, light vertical file fold does not affect signature

VERY FINE. A BEAUTIFULLY FRAMED FREE FRANK OF ALEXANDER HAMILTON AS SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY.

There has been increased interest in the life of Alexander Hamilton and his important role in the birth of our nation, and we encourage those interested to see the new musical on Broadway about his life.

E. 3,000-4,000
2,500
Back to Top
4009
c
Sale Number 1117, Lot Number 4009, Free Franks and Historical DocumentsAlexander Hamilton, Alexander HamiltonAlexander Hamilton. Delegate from New York (Continental Congresses of 1782-83, 1787-88), framer and signer of the Constitution, Secretary of the Treasury during Washington administration (1789-95), and victim of Aaron Burr's bullet, attempted free frank "On public Service A. Hamilton" on 1799 folded cover to Aaron Ogden in Elizabethtown N.J., neat strike of "New-York Oct. 23" clamshell datestamp and "Paid" handstamp, manuscript "8" rate, some repaired splitting along vertical file folds, otherwise Fine, in response to fears of an invasion during the Quasi-War with France, President Adams was persuaded to create a new army with ex-President George Washington in command and Adams's nemesis, Alexander Hamilton, as Inspector General with the rank of Major General; however, Hamilton's position did not entitle him to free-franking privileges, thus this "Public Service" letter was charged postage (as an aside, George Washington died a little more than two months after mailing), ex Dr. Robertson

E. 1,000-1,500
2,700
Back to Top
4010
c
Sale Number 1117, Lot Number 4010, Free Franks and Historical DocumentsJohn Hancock, John HancockJohn Hancock. Signer of Declaration of Independence, delegate from Massachusetts, free frank "Congress Baltimore John Hancock" as President of Third Continental Congress (Dec. 20, 1776 to Mar. 4, 1777) on folded cover addressed in his hand to "The Hon. The Council of Safety of the State of Pennsylvania", receipt docketing on flap indicates Jan. 9, 1777 origin date and enclosure of a Resolve of Congress, lightly toned file folds, expertly silked and restored

VERY FINE APPEARANCE. A RARE JOHN HANCOCK FREE FRANK AS PRESIDENT OF THE THIRD CONTINENTAL CONGRESS, THE ONLY CONGRESS TO BE CONVENED IN BALTIMORE.

After the retreat of the Continental army through New Jersey, Congress was apprehensive of an attack on Philadelphia and adjourned on December 12 to meet later in Baltimore, from December 20, 1776, to March 4, 1777. This cover was franked and sent during that time period.

Ex Dr. Robertson.

E. 4,000-5,000
10,000
Back to Top
4011
c
Sale Number 1117, Lot Number 4011, Free Franks and Historical DocumentsSam Houston, Sam HoustonSam Houston. Free frank "Free Sam Houston" as Senator from Texas on folded cover to New York City, red "Washington D.C. 3 May Free" circular datestamp, some slight wear, Very Fine, with 2002 P.F. and 2005 PSA/DNA certificates, ex Dr. Robertson

E. 1,000-1,500
1,200
Back to Top
4012
c
Sale Number 1117, Lot Number 4012, Free Franks and Historical DocumentsHenry "Light Horse" Harry Lee, Henry "Light Horse" Harry LeeHenry "Light Horse" Harry Lee. Delegate from Virginia (Continental Congresses of 1785-88), Governor of Virginia, Representative from Virginia and father of Robert E. Lee, free frank "Free H Lee" on folded cover, docketing on back indicates sent on April 29, 1800, clear strike of red "PH 29 AP" datestamp and matching "Free" handstamp, light vertical file fold affects frank, Very Fine, Lee is perhaps most famous for eulogizing George Washington at his funeral "First in war, first in peace, first in the hearts of his countrymen", ex Dr. Robertson

E. 1,000-1,500
2,800
Back to Top
4013
c
Sale Number 1117, Lot Number 4013, Free Franks and Historical DocumentsGeorge McClellan, George McClellanGeorge McClellan. Successful unauthorized free frank "Hd Qts of the Army/Geo McClellan/Maj. Enl Comdg." on cover to Hartford Conn., partial "Washington D.C. Jan. 20" (1862) circular datestamp, Fine, because of his rank (he replaced Scott as Commanding General on Nov. 1, 1861), and because Scott's frank was recognized, it was probably assumed by Washington D.C. postal clerks that McClellan had the same privilege, but no mention is made in any of the official summaries in this period; to his credit, McClellan did not use the word "Free"; nevertheless the cover was postmarked and went through the mails without any due markings; one other such cover, franked by Grant, is recorded by the ASCC, Vol. II, but the introduction to that section states: "No authority for Scott's Civil War era sucessors, McClellan and Halleck, has been found, nor have their franked covers been seen." A remarkable, and possibly unique, war-time usage, ex Dr. Robertson

E. 1,500-2,000
2,100
Back to Top
4014
c
Sale Number 1117, Lot Number 4014, Free Franks and Historical DocumentsWinfield Scott, Winfield ScottWinfield Scott. U.S. General, presidential candidate, first commander of the Union forces in Civil War, free frank as Maj. General "Free Winfield Scott Major Genl., &c &c." at top right of cover to Charles King in Elizabethtown N.J., red "Washington Railroad Oct. 4" route agent's circular datestamp, slightly reduced at right and some edgewear, Very Fine, probably used around 1850, ex Dr. Robertson

E. 400-500
275
Back to Top
4015
 
George Washington Family. Over 70 covers and folded letters from relatives of George Washington, dating from the late 18th century thru the Civil War period, incl. Lawrence Augustine Washington and family at Oak Grove Va., with a copy of Popes Creek Plantation: Birthplace of George Washington, also with a Jan. 1800 The Weekly Register newspaper which has George Washington's obituary and mentions Napoleons campaign into Egypt, mixed condition, an interesting group of material for the researcher

E. 300-400
1,100
Back to Top
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