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John Quincy Adams Scathing Anti-Masonic Letter After the Murder of a Prominent Anti-Mason Who Threatened to Reveal their Secrets

JOHN QUINCY ADAMS, Autograph Letter Signed as Congressman, to Stephen Bates. Washington, D.C., April 1, 1833. 3 pp. 8 x 9¾ in.


“To all members of the Masonic fraternity, who entered it before the murder of Morgan I would extend the most liberal Toleration. Most of them took the Oaths without reflecting upon what they imported….Now the case is otherwise. How they can now take or administer the cutthroat Oath to keep Secret, what all the world knows, I cannot comprehend.”

In the wake of the murder of William Morgan, a prominent anti-Mason who had threatened to reveal the society’s secrets, John Quincy Adams requested the return of an old letter. Considering the political climate, Adams thought the letter would reflect poorly on its now-deceased recipient, as well as expose Adams, a prominent opponent of Freemasonry, to public criticism for having supported a man he knew to be of good character who also happened to be a Mason. The former president, now in Congress, goes on to explain his political support for anti-Masonry, one of the first third-party political movements in the United States.

Item #23716, $19,000

Thomas Jefferson Signed Act of Congress for Compensating Court Officers, Jurors, and Witnesses

FIRST CONGRESS. [THOMAS JEFFERSON], Printed Document Signed as Secretary of State. An Act providing compensations for the officers of the Judicial Courts of the United States, and for Jurors and Witnesses, and for other purposes. New York, N.Y., March 3, 1791. Signed in type by George Washington as President, Frederick Augustus Muhlenberg as Speaker of the House of Representatives, and John Adams as Vice President, and president of the Senate. 2 pp., 9 x 15 in.


Under the new federal Constitution, the First Congress had the momentous job of creating the laws to govern the various branches of the new government, whether setting up the framework for executive departments such as Treasury and State, establishing its own rules and schedule, or, in this case, creating a federal court system. In its second session (January 4, 1790 through August 12, 1790) Congress passed the Crimes Act, which defined a plethora of federal crimes, punishments, and court procedures. Here in the third session, the Congress provides a schedule of compensation for officers and jurors, as well as a process for scheduling and meeting places for the various federal district courts around the new nation.

Item #23804, $19,000

Harry Truman’s Notebook for Kansas City Law School
Night Classes

HARRY S. TRUMAN, Autograph Manuscript Notebook, [Kansas City, Missouri, ca. November 20, 1924–January 29, 1925]. 48 leaves, in pen and pencil, on a removable pad of no. 2 memo paper, inserted in a limp mottled brown leather binder, the front cover gilt with the logo of the Phoenix Mutual Life Insurance Co. and gilt-lettered “Things to do Today” and “Harry S. Truman.” The front pastedown is stamped with the name of Phoenix Mutual representative Edwin H. Green. 5 x 3 in. In maroon buckram folding case.


“Section I must be learned in detail and as a whole… learn by heart”

Item #23833, $18,500

Future President, General William Henry Harrison, Successfully Defends Himself Against Graft Charges

WILLIAM HENRY HARRISON, Autograph Letter Signed as Congressman, to Peter Hagner. Northbend, [Ohio], September 18, 1816. 3 pp, 7½ x 12½ in., On two conjoined sheets.


During a Congressional inquiry that he requested to clear his name, Harrison answers criticism regarding an incident during his command of the Northwestern Army during the War of 1812. Here, the future president provides lengthy details to the Department of War about “supplying the troops at Detroit under orders given by General Cass & Colo Butler” in order “to supply the neglect of the contractor in furnishing the troops then.”

Item #23213.03, $15,000

Large Signed Photograph of President Chester A. Arthur

CHESTER A. ARTHUR, Signed Photo, as President, [1882], sepia, approximately 16 x 21 in., mounted on a larger-size board approximately 10½ x 24¼ in., matted and framed. Boldly signed and inscribed below the image, “To John Jameson, with sincere regard, / Chester A. Arthur.” The 3/4-length portrait shows the President standing in a heavy overcoat next to a table on which his top hat rests. The inscription is probably to John Jameson, an Amherst, Massachusetts lawyer, who was appointed postmaster in December 1876.


Item #22260, $15,000

Jackson on a Creek War Expedition to Pensacola, Politics, and a Friend Who He Hopes Will Stay Sober and Pursue his Profession

ANDREW JACKSON, Autograph Letter Signed, to Richard K. Call. “The Hermitage,” near Nashville, Tenn., February 3, 1823. 3 pp, 8¼ x 12¾ in., on two conjoined sheets. With address leaf in Jackson’s hand, and light partial “NASH.T. FEB 5” postmark.


“if he does this he will & must succeed ... this prudent course will ensure him wealth & respectability”

Writing to comrade-in-arms Richard Call, Jackson discusses cattle procurement for his troops in the Creek War in Florida: “On my march to Pensacola a fresh trail of Cattle was discovered diverting its course...  The Spanish guard at Capt. Bayles was surprised & captured & six Indians killed...” Jackson was still concerned with the rightful owners being paid.

Recognition as a hero after the War of 1812, especially his victory over the British at the Battle of New Orleans, catapulted Jackson into the political arena. Here, soon-to-be U.S. Senator Jackson looks for support from Alabama. Turning to the topic of a mutual friend, Captain Easter, Jackson urges recipient Call to encourage Easter to stay sober and focus on his career.

Item #23213.02, $13,500

Anti-Jackson Broadside in Highly Contested
1828 Presidential Election

ANDREW JACKSON, Broadside. A Brief Account of Some of the Bloody Deeds of General Jackson, Philadelphia?, 1828. 15¼ x 21 in. 1 p.


Item #21417.99, $11,000

Andrew Jackson Appoints an Indian Agent, Discusses Family Matters, Horse Racing, and the Need for a Good Cotton Crop to Rebuild His Burned Home

ANDREW JACKSON, Autograph Letter Signed as President, to William Donelson. Washington, D.C., August 31, 1835. 3 pp, 7¾ x 9¾ in., on two conjoined sheets, with address leaf in Jackson’s hand.


Andrew Jackson needs an agent “well acquainted with the Indian character, and all the laws regulating intercourse with them” to supervise negotiating the first treaty between the U.S. Government and the Plains Indians, as well as the need for liquid cash: “the burning of my House [the Hermitage] & furniture makes a good [cotton] crop now necessary to meet my wants.” He also laments that he may have to sell his colts, along with news about his family.

Item #23213.01, $9,500

Truman Refuses HUAC Subpoena Over Appointment, Despite FBI Warning, of Russian Spy to Lead IMF

HARRY S. TRUMAN, Typed Letter Signed (“Harry S. Truman”), as former President, to Congressman Harold H. Velde, chairman of the Committee on Un-American Activities, November 11, 1953. 2½ pp., 4to, marked “For Immediate Release.” With clipping of New York Times account of November 13, 1953. Signed copy of his letter to chairman Velde, evidently prepared for the press, explaining why he will not appear for the hearing.


The doctrine [of separation of powers] would be shattered, and the President, contrary to our fundamental theory of Constitutional Government, would become a mere arm of the Legislative Branch of the Government if he would feel during his term of office that his every act might be subject to official inquiry and possible distortion for political purposes.

While the committee is now infamous for encouraging false accusations, it appears that in this case, the Congressional committee was indeed on the trail of a highly placed Soviet Spy.

Item #23659, $9,000

Herbert Hoover Drafts Note, and Fredtjof Nansen Sends Letter to Vladimir Lenin, Trying to Get Lenin to Accept Food Aid for Starving Russians During the Russian Civil War

HERBERT HOOVER, Autograph Note, undated [April, 1919]. Cover sheet: “Draft note (undated) / Dr. Nansen to Lenin in / Mr. Hoover’s handwriting.” 1 p., 8¼ x 10½ in. #24849 With FRIDTJOF NANSEN, Typed Letter Signed, to VLADIMIR LENIN, Paris, France, April 17, 1919. 4 pp., 8¼ x 10¾ in. This compound letter includes Nansen’s proposal for Russian relief to the Big Four allied leaders, their response, and his proposal to Lenin. It is a remarkable compilation of the prospects for and obstacles to efforts to ease Russian suffering.


The Government and peoples whom we represent would be glad to cooperate, without thought of political, military or financial advantage, in any proposal which would relieve this situation in Russia.

To combat starvation in Europe during World War I, President Woodrow Wilson created the United States Food Administration by executive order. Under the direction of Herbert Hoover, it became one of the most efficient and successful governmental initiatives in American history. More than 5 million Russians died of starvation before food aid was allowed in 1921.

Item #24850, $8,500

Rare same day broadside of John Adams’ Fourth State of the Union Address: Opening Washington D.C. as the Nation’s Capital

[JOHN ADAMS], Broadside, Supplement to the National Intelligencer. [Washington: Samuel Harrison Smith, November 22, 1800].


Adams’ historic fourth Annual Message to Congress—now known as the State of the Union Address—announces the establishment of the District of Columbia as the nation’s capital. The second President, who had just been defeated for re-election, optimistically discusses unprecedented economic growth, considers the recently consummated treaty of amity and commerce with Prussia, and focuses on the need for expanded naval forces and coastal fortifications, which he believes to be necessary given the Quasi-War with France.

A rare broadside extra edition: no institutional copies are listed in OCLC, although it is possible they exist in uncatalogued runs. The National Intelligencer, then in its second month in print, had moved to Washington at the behest of President-elect Thomas Jefferson.

Item #30028.06, ON HOLD

Reagan’s Pitch for a Reality Radio Series Based on His Yearling Row Ranch

RONALD REAGAN, Autograph Manuscript, c. 1953, unsigned, in pencil, on Reagan’s “Yearling Row” stationery. 13 pp.


Do you know what it is like to be awakened at 2 AM of a dark foggy night by a telephone call from the Sheriff’s office? Your cattle have gone through the fence and are blissfully headed for Ventura blvd.’”

Item #24285, $8,000

While Running for the Democratic Presidential Nomination, Senator Barack Obama on Transparency and Limiting the Power of Special Interests

BARACK OBAMA, Typed Manuscript with autograph corrections. [Chicago, Ill., ca. May 21, 2007]. 2 pp, 8 ½ x 11 in. With 112 handwritten words in Obama’s red ink and pencil and 3 holes punched at left edge of each sheet. Published on the “Commentary” page of the Chicago Tribune, May 21, 2007.


“When it comes to reforming Washington … Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis had the right idea. Sixty years ago he said, ‘Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants; electric light the most efficient policeman.’ Brandeis was a progressive responding to the excesses of the Gilded Age. Nearly a century later, we find Washington in need of a lot of sunlight and disinfectant….

I’m not perfect. In my current pres. campaign, I shall have to raise money, and still have relationships w/lobbyists. But at least people will know who those relationships are...”

Over a year before he became the Democratic candidate for President, Senator Barack Obama addressed the issue of lobbyists, special interest groups, and campaign financing.  Obama’s message was published in the Chicago Tribune on May 21, 2007.  Obama’s careful edits, with over 100 words and many strike-outs in his hand, likely came too late for the editorial page deadline of this major metropolitan newspaper. Most of the text Obama wished to be struck remained, and several phrases he did not strike through (noted below in parentheses) were removed, possibly by the editorial page editor.

Item #22930, $7,500

Andrew Jackson Bashes The Whigs
for Mixing Religion And Politics

ANDREW JACKSON, Letter Signed, as former President, to Mahlon Dickerson. Hermitage, Ten., January 10, 1838. 1 p. With autograph address leaf.


A bristly letter denouncing his Whig enemies in Tennessee for ruining the career of a young clergyman and editor. “This so displeased a few of the Whig Elders, and Deacons of the church that they, for his becoming Editor, dropped him as a candidate for orders in their Church--some of whom are believed now never to have had three grains of religion.

Item #20890, $7,500

Lyndon B. Johnson on Civil Rights

LYNDON B. JOHNSON, Typed Letter Signed, to Michael J. Kirwan, March 17, 1965. 1 p., 6½ x 8½ in., with original envelope (7 x 4½ in.).


there are few issues before the people of this country that are so rooted in rightness - constitutionally, morally, and humanly.

Just ten days after the “Bloody Sunday” confrontation at the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, drew national attention to civil rights, President Johnson thanks a Congressman for his approval of Johnson’s major voting rights speech to Congress. Five months later, Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act of 1965 into law.

Item #24790, $6,500

Theodore Roosevelt Supports World War I Draft, and Criticizes Wilson for Preventing His Volunteers from Preparing and Going to Aid of France

THEODORE ROOSEVELT, Typed Letter Signed, to Otis Henderson Cutler. [New York, NY], April 25, 1917. 3 pp., 8½ x 11 in. Extensively annotated in black ink by Roosevelt, on Metropolitan Magazine stationery. With: A typed fair copy of Roosevelt’s April 25 letter incorporating his corrections (possibly prepared by the recipient), 3 pp.; With Cutler’s retained carbon copy of his May 14 response to Roosevelt, offering himself as a volunteer, 1 p.; With a follow-up letter from Roosevelt to Cutler discussing in detail Wilson’s refusal to deploy the divisions, consisting of a printed cover letter, May 25, 2 pp., with stamped signature, and its original attachment, a circular letter informing the volunteers that President Wilson had refused to deploy them, signed in type by Roosevelt, May 21, 3 pp.


“I ask that our country’s record in this war be kept in line with the heroic deeds of the past. Let us, for our own sake, at once send troops to France”

A remarkable letter of support for universal military service, for immediate involvement in World War I, his willingness to aid the effort by raising troops with Congressional authorization, and his reaction to President Wilson’s refusal to allow Roosevelt’s volunteer troops to be deployed in France before the draft army was ready. With three related documents.

Item #23954.01-.04, $6,500

Eisenhower Signed D-Day Message

DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER, Broadside Signed in dark blue ink. Statement to the soldiers, sailors and airmen of the Allied Expeditionary Force on June 6, 1944. Document is approx. 5¾ x 9½ in., archivally framed to approximately 22 x 14 in.


From a limited edition of Eisenhower’s Crusade in Europe, (New York: Doubleday & Co., 1948), limited to 1,426 copies. The war had ended only three years earlier, and Eisenhower must have been looking towards politics - he was elected to the Presidency in 1952.

Item #24122, $6,500

Franklin Delano Roosevelt Criticizes Thomas Paine on Opposing George Washington

FRANKLIN DELANO ROOSEVELT, Typed Letter Signed as President, to Frederic A. Delano. Washington, D.C., August 25, 1942, 1 p., 7 x 9 in. On White House stationery.


Item #22923, $6,500

Shortly After the Beginning of the War of 1812,
Monroe Expresses his Opposition to Mob Violence

JAMES MONROE, Autograph Letter Signed as James Madison’s Secretary of State to an unidentified friend, Albemarle [his home], Virginia, August 5, 1812. 1 p.


Item #21059.99, $6,500

1865 General Orders,
Including Many Regarding Lincoln’s Assassination

[CIVIL WAR - WAR DEPARTMENT], Book. Bound collection of separately printed General Orders from the Adjutant General’s office for 1865. Containing 168 of 175 consecutive orders, and a 94-page index at front. Bound for Major General William Scott Ketchum, with his name in gilt on the spine and his markings or wartime notes on numerous pages. 4¾ x 7 in.


Item #22265, $5,550
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