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The Building Blocks of Albert Einstein’s Creative Mind

[ALBERT EINSTEIN], Ephemera. Set of Anker-Steinbaukasten children’s building blocks by F. Ad. Richter & Cie., Rudolstadt, [Germany], c.1880s. Approximately 160 composite quartz sand, chalk, and linseed oil blocks in red, limestone and slate gray, in various sizes and shapes, together with three or more sets of building plans, all contained in two wooden boxes with printed Anker-Steinbaukasten labels.


A unique and important artifact of his childhood.

Item #24284, $180,000

“Mission Rules Summary” Data File Sheets Used by Buzz Aldrin in the Historic Apollo 11 First Manned Mission to the Moon

[NASA], Printed Document. “Mission Rules Summary” Apollo 11 Flight Data File, Part. No. SKB32100080-201 S/N 1001, pp. MR-1/2 & MR-3/4, printed recto & verso. NASA/MSC, June 30, 1969. Two leaves, both leaves signed and inscribed: “Flown to the Moon on Apollo XI / Buzz Aldrin / Apollo XI LMP [Lunar Module Pilot]”; with Typed Letter Signed by Buzz Aldrin, providing background and authentication. 4 pp. plus 1 p., 8 x 10½ in.


According to NASA, Mission Rules “provide flight control personnel with guidelines to expedite the decision-making process.” They “outline preplanned decisions designed to minimize the amount of real-time rationalization when non-nominal situations occur…” An additional phrase nonchalantly recognizes the possibility of catastrophic failure, pointing out that the Rules apply “if a system failure occurs, and a choice is available.”

These pages summarize key Go/No Go decision points, starting right after lift-off, including:

TLI (trans lunar insertion) vs EO (earth orbit flight); Eagle undocking for lunar phase; powered descent; Program 64 (lunar approach protocols developed by Margaret Hamilton’s flight software team); gate to touchdown; ascent from the moon; re-docking with Columbia; and maneuvers resulting in their TEI (trans earth insertion) and safe return.

Item #25876, $115,000

Albert Einstein on the search for greater meaning: “Using such apothecary’s methods one cannot reveal any of God’s secrets, I think.” A Swiss chemist’s work leaves Einstein cold, but Schrödinger “has the scent of a deeper truth.”

ALBERT EINSTEIN, Autograph Correspondence Card Signed, to Michele Besso, May 1, 1926, Berlin. In German. 1 p., 4¼ x 5⅞ in.


Item #25045, $80,000

Star Chart Used During Historic Apollo 11 Flight, Inscribed and Signed by Buzz Aldrin

[NASA], Printed Document Signed and Inscribed by Buzz Aldrin. “Carried to the moon on Apollo XI. Buzz Aldrin.” Flown sheet from the Apollo 11 Flight Plan, Part No. SKB32100080-201, S/N 1001, figure 9.2-5, printed on recto only. NASA/Manned Spacecraft Center, July 1, 1969. With Buzz Aldrin Typed Letter Signed on his personal stationery. 1 p., 8 x 10½ in.


Item #25877, $75,000

A Timeless Memento of the Apollo Space Program - signed by five of the twelve men who have walked on the surface of the moon and eight Lunar Module pilots

APOLLO ASTRONAUTS, Printed Document Signed, c. 1972. NASA Grumman Apollo Lunar Module Internal Components Brochure (Bethpage, NY: Grumman, 1969), eight acetate sheets with color overlaying drawings of multiple lunar module structures and components. Signed by Apollo astronauts Buzz Aldrin, Alan Bean, Gene Cernan, Walt Cunningham, Charles M. Duke Jr., Fred Haise, Edgar Mitchell, Rusty Schwieckart, Tom Stafford, and Al Worden. 8 pp., 8 x 10 in.


Item #24307, ON HOLD

Early Engineer’s Book for the Long Island Railroad, 1835-1872

LONG ISLAND RAILROAD, Memorandum and Letter Book, 1835-1872. 344 pp., of which 212 pp. have writing, 8¼ x 13 x 1¼ in.


This volume is a fascinating primary source for the nation’s oldest railroad still operating under its original name, including correspondence setting the course for routes now traveled by millions of riders every month. Later use of this book by a New Jersey hatmaker and Civil War veteran gives insights into the daily life and expenses of a craftsman and farmer in the 1870s.

Item #24879, $4,500

Early Electricity and the Spread of the Telephone from the Documents of George C. Maynard

GEORGE C. MAYNARD, Archive. Journals, notebooks, notes, and related papers regarding the spread of telephone communications in the late 19th century. Nineteen items.


Item #23012, $4,500

J. P. Morgan Signs Dividend Declaration Twice, for His Father and for First President of Union Pacific Railroad

J. PIERPONT MORGAN, Partially Printed Document Signed, Dividends Paid to Stockholders of Oswego & Syracuse Railroad Company, August 20, 1863. J. P. Morgan signs twice, as attorney for stockholders Junius P. Morgan and “William H. Ogden” [William B. Ogden]. 2 pp., 13½ x 9½ in.


On August 10, 1863, the Oswego & Syracuse Railroad Company declared Dividend No. Twenty, which was payable on or after August 20, 1863. Junius S. Morgan held 180 shares of stock in the company, and his 3.5 percent dividend on the capital stock was $315. J. Pierpont Morgan signed for his father “Junius S. Morgan by his atty J. Pierpont Morgan” on August 20. William H. Ogden held 108 shares, and his dividend was $189. J. Pierpont Morgan signed for Ogden’s divided as “James Tinker Atty by his atty J. Pierpont Morgan” on August 21. These two pages contain the names of eighteen stockholders, together with their number of shares, dividends, dates of receipt in August and September 1863, and their signatures or those of their agents.

Item #25399, $2,500

The Prospectus of the Society for Establishing Useful Manufactures

[ALEXANDER HAMILTON], Newspaper. Gazette of the United States, September 10, 1791. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: John Fenno. 4 pp., 10 x 16 in. The prospectus is printed on the front page in three columns.


Contrasting with the agrarian view of many Virginia founding fathers, New Yorker Alexander Hamilton saw an industrial future for the United States. After nearly two years of study and with the aid of Assistant Secretary Tench Coxe, Secretary of the Treasury Hamilton compiled his famed Report on Manufactures at the request of Congress. With the Society for Establishing Useful Manufactures, Coxe and Hamilton advocate creating the nation’s first public-private partnership to develop the area around the Great Falls of the Passaic River, using the cataract for power.

Item #30014.06, $2,500

John Ericsson, inventor of the USS Monitor, discusses sales of his Caloric Engines

JOHN ERICSSON, Autograph Letter Signed, to Unknown Recipient, September 29, 1860. 2 pp.


I had hoped you were snugly & permanently located on the lung healing slopes of the Hudson at West Point. You will now be much nearer to the metropolis…

Item #21303.01, $900

A General Account of … Using Atomic Energy
for Military Purposes

H.D. SMYTH, A General Account of … Using Atomic Energy for Military Purposes Under the Auspices of the United States Government 1940-1945. Written at the Request of Major General L. R. Groves, United States Army... Washington, DC: Superintendent of Documents. (1945). Book, 1945. 182 pp, illus. with 2 graphs. With ownership signature of “Erwin Hiebert” twice.


Item #20807, $750

Membership Certificate to the Naval Library
and Institute for Lt. Cmdr. George Dewey

[GEORGE DEWEY], Printed Document. A lithographed membership certificate to the Naval Library and Institute. Signed by Charles Steedman, President, & witnessed twice by Oliver L. Fisher. Navy Yard, Boston, Mass October 15, 1871. 11½ x 16½ in.


Item #22023.01, $750

1790 Massachusetts Newspaper Discussing Nantucket Whalers

[NANTUCKET], Newspaper, The Columbian Centinel. Boston: Benjamin Russell, December 15, 1790. 4 pp.


Item #30000.007, $450