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World War I and II
World War I and II

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Haim Laskov Writes to His Future Wife during WWII

HAIM LASKOV, Autograph Letter Signed, to Shulamith Chen. Italy, Nov. 19, 1943. 2 pp. Heading in English, body in Hebrew.

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“Night after night I watch (the stars) and read your regards.”

Item #20756, $400

William K. And Harold Vanderbilt Signed
World War I Veterans Bonus New York State Bond

[WILLIAM K. VANDERBILT], Partially Printed Document Signed. $50,000 World War Bonus Bond, issued to William K. Vanderbilt, Harold S. Vanderbilt, and Frederick W. Vanderbilt as trustees for Anna H. Vanderbilt, signed by first two. Certificate #64, with engraved vignette of the state seal. October 16, 1944.

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Item #23087, $750

FBI Director Warns Polaroid to Guard against Espionage and Sabotage before American Entry into World War II

J. EDGAR HOOVER, Typed Letter Signed, to Officers of Polaroid Company, on FBI letterhead, marked “Personal and Confidential,” Washington, October 22, 1940. 1 p., 7¼ x 9¼ in. #23917.01

Typed Letter Signed, to Edwin H. Land, on FBI letterhead, Washington, January 10, 1941. 8 pp., 7¼ x 9¼ in. #23917.02

Book. “Secret” booklet published by the FBI Suggestions for Protection of Industrial Facilities, April, 1941. 50 pp. #23917.03

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In these two letters, J. Edgar Hoover offers general and specific advice to the Polaroid Company of Massachusetts to protect it against “foreign espionage and sabotage” as America tries to stay out of the world war ravaging Europe and Asia.

Item #23917, $1,500

Teddy Roosevelt Criticizes British and American Preparedness for World War I

THEODORE ROOSEVELT, Typed Letter Signed, to R. M. Johnston, Oyster Bay, November 24, 1915. 1 p., 6½ x 7¾ in.

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the English are most sensitive about my having stated that they had failed to do what they ought to have done, thanks to their lack of preparedness in advance; and this although I stated at the same time that we would have done infinitely worse.

Item #24493.01, $1,900

Woodrow Wilson Protests the Sinking of Lusitania & Threatens to Break Diplomatic Relations – About a Year Before America Enters WW I

WOODROW WILSON, Signed Pamphlet. Address of the President of the United States Delivered at a Joint Session of the Two Houses of Congress, April 19, 1916.Washington, D.C., ca April 19, 1916. Bound in blue cloth boards with titled spine with several blank leaves. Spine cracked but binding intact, very minor marginal tear to title page, other pages lightly toned with a light vertical crease but clean overall. 7 pp., 5¾ x 9 in.

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Item #24100, $2,500

Harding’s Return to Normalcy – and Isolationism – after World War I

WARREN G. HARDING, Typed Letter Signed as President, to Senator Joseph Medill McCormick, Washington, D. C., August 29, 1921. With autograph emendations in two different secretarial hands. 8 pp.

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Key political circular from the first-year Republican President written to influence off-year elections in New Mexico and other places. Harding justifies, and praises, the rapid postwar dismantling of America’s military by Congress, while backhandedly criticizing the inattention of his predecessor – Woodrow Wilson – to the peacetime transition. “Vast expenditure without proper consideration for results, is the inevitable fruit of war.”

Item #21124, $2,600

Sterling Silver Sinseollo Dish,
Presented to General Matthew Ridgway
by the Korean Minister of Defense

[MATTHEW B. RIDGWAY], Traditional Korean dish, engraved around the base with four stars, and the inscription, “General & Mrs. M. B. Ridgway / From Defense Minister & Mrs. Ki Poong Lee / Republic of Korea,” ca. 1952.

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Item #22366, $4,250

J.R.R. Tolkien Writes his Proofreader with a Lengthy Discussion of the Lord of the Rings, Including Criticism of Radio Broadcasts of his Work

J.R.R. TOLKIEN, Autograph Letter Signed, to Naomi Mitchison. Headington, Oxford, England, December 8, 1955. 4 pp on 2 leaves of wove paper with Pirie’s/ Crown Bond watermark. 5 5/16 x 7 1/8 in. (13½ x 18 cm). The first page is embossed “76 Sandfield Road/ Headington/ Oxford.” With original autograph addressed envelope.

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In a letter peppered with references to Middle Earth and its inhabitants, an exhausted Tolkien takes his first lengthy holiday in four years—in Italy. He returns and writes to Naomi Mitchison, a fellow novelist and his proofreader, for failing to provide feedback for her novel, To the Chapel Perilous. Tolkien discusses the demands on his time, ranging from his teaching load, thesis advising, and publishing, to reading critical reviews. Tolkien’s dissatisfaction with radio adaptations of Lord of the Rings occupies a prominent place: I think poorly of the broadcast adaptations. Except for a few details I think they are not well done... I thought that the dwarf (Gloin not Gimli, but I suppose Gimli will talk like his father...) was not too bad if a bit exaggerated. I do think of the “Dwarves” like Jews: at once native and alien in their habitations, speaking the language of the country, but with an accent due to their own private tongue. The balance of the letter discusses literary critics, reviews of Mitchison’s book, and anachronisms in her latest offering as contrasted to Mark Twain’s A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court.

Item #23221, $22,000