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Last Formal Photograph of Lincoln, with Son “Tad”

ABRAHAM LINCOLN, Photograph [taken by Alexander Gardner, February 5, 1865], Albumen print by Bouve, Boston, Mass. Captioned, “President Lincoln and his Son Thaddeus/ The Last Photograph the President Sat For/ Published by G.F Bouve & Co, 41 Brattle St, Boston.” Image 6¼ x 8½ in., mounted on original board, 8 x 10 in.


In this albumen print, Lincoln’s youngest son Thomas is erroneously called “Thaddeus,” because of nickname “Tad.” An unfinished Washington Monument (construction began in 1848, but was not completed until 1884) rises in the background perhaps referencing the funerary motif of a broken column symbolic of a life cut short. This image, showing father and son posing for what would be Lincoln’s last sitting.

Item #22350, $3,750

President Lincoln & His Most Profitable Client, the Illinois Central Railroad

ABRAHAM LINCOLN, Autograph Letter Signed “A. Lincoln” as President, to Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton, May 23, 1863. “Executive Mansion, Washington” stationery, 2 pp. on one sheet, 7¾ x 9¾ in. With front panel of original envelope, to which Lincoln has added an Autograph Note Signed, and Stanton has also added an Autograph Note Signed.


Less than six years after he successfully sued the Illinois Central for legal fees, President Lincoln faces another problem with the railroad, now vital for the transportation of Union troops. In another dispute over payments, he tells his Secretary of War, “If I had the leisure which I have not, I believe I could settle it; but prima facie it appears to me we better settle the account ourselves...”

Item #22131, $60,000

Abraham Lincoln Lengthy and Attractive Signed Legal Brief in a Case Heard by Judge David Davis, Later Lincoln’s Campaign Manager and Supreme Court Appointee

ABRAHAM LINCOLN, Autograph Manuscript Signed by Lincoln as “Bush & Lincoln pq,” Narratio, March 1850, in the case of Matthews v. Saltonstall, April 1850 term of the Tazewell County Circuit Court. 2 ½ pp with approx. 670 words in Lincoln’s hand, blue paper.


On September 20, 1849, William L. Saltonstall began building a road through Josiah Matthews’ land, southwest of Tremont, Illinois.  Matthews objected and retained Abraham Lincoln and local attorney John M. Bush to file suit against in the Tazewell County Circuit Court, at the newly constructed courthouse in Pekin, on March 9, 1850. Matthews sued in the action of trespass and requested $500 for damage to his land. Saltonstall retained Lincoln’s former partner John T. Stuart and local attorney Benjamin F. James. In an affidavit filed on April 6, they declared that Guerdon F. Saltonstall could testify that six years earlier, when he owned the land, he and Matthews agreed that a lane be left along Matthews’ property as a right-of-way. Pending his testimony, the judge ordered a continuance. Both parties then agreed to arbitration, and on June 4, 1850, Matthews agreed that a right of way was necessary, and Saltonstall agreed to pay actual damages to be set by the arbitrators.  Three arbitrators viewed the land and listened to testimony. On June 12, they rendered their decision that Saltonstall should pay Matthews $16 and also pay $5.90 for the costs of the arbitration. At the September 1850 term of the Tazewell County Circuit Court, Judge David Davis dismissed the case, ordering Matthews to pay $2.40 in court costs.

Item #24513, $11,500

Lincoln Summons His Cabinet for a Historic Meeting to Discuss Compensated Emancipation

ABRAHAM LINCOLN, Autograph Letter Signed, as President, to Secretary of State William H. Seward, “Executive Mansion,” Washington, D.C., March 5, 1862. Signed at bottom by “William H. Seward,” with a note in an unidentified contemporary hand. 1 p. 4¾ x 7¼ in.


The United States is the only nation in history to end slavery through Civil War. Nations as diverse as Russia, the British Empire, France, Brazil, and others around the world ended their reliance on slave labor through legislative means that included some form of compensation to slaveowners for their lost “assets.” Here, President Lincoln requests that Secretary of State William Seward summon a meeting of the Cabinet. The following day, the president presented a special message to Congress with his plan end slavery through compensation. There were no takers among the slaveholding border states. The brevity of Lincoln’s letter belies its far-reaching implications and the tantalizing possibilities of “what might have been.”

Item #23747, $90,000

The First War Department Printing of the Emancipation Proclamation, Bound with 400-plus 1862-1863 General Orders, including the Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation

ABRAHAM LINCOLN, Printed Document. Emancipation Proclamation. Signed in type by Lincoln, Secretary of State William H. Seward, and Adjutant General Lorenzo Thomas. General Order No. 1, War Department, Adjutant General’s Office, Washington January 2, 1863 (but based on usual practice, more likely printed ca. January 7th.). 3pp.


This book of official War Department orders was bound together for Army paymaster Major N.S. Brinton.

Item #23692, $4,500

A Fighting Vermont Regiment Summary of Actions after Gettysburg, July 5-13, 1863

ADDISON W. PRESTON, Autograph Document, c. July to October 1863, 2 pp., 8 x 12¼ in.


Item #23879.01, $1,250

Vermont Cavalrymen Want to Get the Most for their Reenlistments

ADDISON W. PRESTON, Autograph Letter Signed, to Senator Solomon Foot, December 17, 1863. 3 pp., 7¾ x 10 in.


After the patriotic fervor of 1861 filled Union armies with volunteers, the United States struggled to fill and expand Union armies. In March 1863, Congress passed the Enrollment Act, establishing a national draft to provide manpower for the Union Army. Drafted men could hire substitutes or pay a commutation fee of $300, and both policies were controversial, leading to the slogan, “rich man’s war, poor man’s fight.”

On October 17, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln called for 300,000 additional volunteers for the Union army, divided by the War Department into quotas for each of the respective loyal states. If a state did not meet its quota by January 5, 1864, a draft would fill the remaining quota for each state. The quota for Vermont was 3,300 men, in addition to the requirements of the July 1863 draft not completely filled. Active recruiting furnished more than 3,700 men by the end of January 1864, and more than 1,000 veterans, like those in Preston’s cavalry regiment, reenlisted in the field. On March 14, 1864, President Lincoln called for 200,000 more volunteers.

Item #23879.05, $600

Archive of Documents from the “best fighting colonel in the Cavalry Corps,” According to Custer

ADDISON W. PRESTON. [CIVIL WAR. VERMONT.], Official papers of Preston, an officer in the 1st Vermont Cavalry, 1862-1864. 50 items, including: 14 letters and orders to Preston; 2 undated and unsigned draft letters apparently in Preston’s hand; 21 certificates regarding lost supplies, 1862; 6 clothing and ordnance returns and receipts; 1 other document; and 6 covers; condition very good.


These letters, orders, and reports detail the Civil War service of A. W. Preston, who rose from Captain of Company D to colonel of the 1st Vermont Volunteer Cavalry, before he was killed in battle in June 1864. Among the highlights are a two-page summary of his unit’s actions during and after the Battle of Gettysburg; letters and orders sent to Preston; and certifications of lost supplies. These certifications provide vivid first-hand details from one of the most active regiments in the entire Civil War. The 1st Vermont Cavalry ranks fifth in losses of men among cavalry regiments. It was second to none in its capture of 29 Confederate cannon. From the Spring of 1862 to the Spring of 1865, it was involved in 76 battles and skirmishes. Four of its members earned the Medal of Honor, and it accounted for three of eight medals awarded for colors captured at the Battle of Cedar Creek.

Item #23879, $2,000

“Sister Tyler” - A Rare Brady Portrait of the First Civil War Nurse & Later Administrator of Boston’s Children’s Hospital

ADELINE BLANCHARD TYLER (1805-1875), Carte de Visite, Brady New York mount, with “Brady’s National Photographic Portrait Galleries” NY & Washington DC imprint on verso. Ca 1864.


Item #22362, $1,950

Einstein Agrees to Allow “a Short Book on the Hydrogen Bomb” to Use His Statement Made on Eleanor Roosevelt’s TV Show

ALBERT EINSTEIN, Typed Document Signed, Princeton, N.J., April 19, 1950. 1 p., 8¼ x 11¼ in. 1 p. On “Didier, Publisher” letterhead paper, addressed to Einstein, in Princeton, and signed by him. Formerly folded, envelope stapled on the back.


Item #24253, $12,500

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, $90,000

Einstein is glad that “the woman” (his estranged wife) is feeling better, and reports that he is living “peacefully and contentedly in my quiet cell” in Berlin, “as if people had all gone into hibernation; because whatever is active does not suggest human feeling

ALBERT EINSTEIN, Autograph Note Signed, to Heinrich Zangger, August 1916 (postmarked August 24), Berlin, Germany. 1 p., 5½ x 3½ in.


Besso, who is in Berne right now, informs me that my wife is feeling a bit better…. In any case, I am glad that the woman is receiving the best care possible. Aside from this worry, I am living peacefully and contentedly in my quiet cell, into which no newspapers penetrate. I have the feeling as if people had all gone into hibernation; because whatever is active does not suggest human feeling.

Item #25054, $9,500

Even before Hiroshima, Einstein warns that new technology could cause WWIII

ALBERT EINSTEIN, Typed Letter Signed, in German, January 18, 1945, 1 p, 4to, Princeton, to Dr. Isidore Held, on blindstamped letterhead. 8½ x 11 in.


when one stops mid-stream, the next world war is certain already today. This is all the more the case when modern technical development is leading more and more to a pre-emptive war by the fact that a surprise attack is extraordinarily superior to the defense.

Though a lifelong pacifist, Einstein was pragmatic about self-defense and the need to defeat the evil of Nazism. Einstein co-signed the pivotal letter (with Leo Szilard) in 1939, alerting President Franklin D. Roosevelt to the possibility of an atomic bomb. Clearly, the "modern technical development" was the Atomic Bomb, and with the existence of the Manhattan Project being top secret, Einstein could not expand on his thought here.

The “little book” his friend Dr. Isidore Held had sent in January 1945 apparently opposed the creation of a supranational body – ultimately, the United Nations.  Einstein was passionately committed to global peace, and here he expresses the need to support, not attack, the formation of such an authority.

Since then, under threat of preemptive war or the doctrine of mutually assured destruction, false alarms brought us "this close" to nuclear war several times. Despite its many flaws, the U.N. played an important role in reducing the imminent threat of annihilation more than once.

Item #24333, ON HOLD

One of Einstein’s Best Metaphysical Letters - Counseling His Son on the Meaning of Life and Youth and the Relative Value of Intellectual Creations

ALBERT EINSTEIN, Autograph Letter Signed (“Papa”), in German, to his son Eduard (“Tete” for “petit”). [December 27, 1932]. 2 pp, 8½ x 11 in.


“All my life I have troubled myself with problems and am always – as on the first day – inspired by the fact that cognition in the scientific and artistic sense is the best thing we possess… If one hears the angels singing a couple of times during one’s life, one can give the world something and one is a particularly fortunate and blessed individual.”

Item #23789, $48,000

Shortly Before his Self-imposed Exile from Germany, Albert Einstein Supports an International Language to Promote Peace and Understanding

ALBERT EINSTEIN, Typed Document Signed, Berlin, Germany, December 18, 1929. 1 p., 8¼ x 11¼ in. In German, with Einstein’s autograph accomplishments.


“I am willing to join the federation for the introduction of an international auxiliary language to promote understanding, peace, and cooperation among nations.”

Einstein was a lifelong champion of efforts to eliminate of the nationalist divisions that leaders erected between peoples, often to deadly effect. Esperanto, the “international auxiliary language,” was an easy to learn, politically neutral language invented by L.L. Zamenhof, a Polish ophthalmologist, in the 1870s-1880s. His goals, to transcend nationalism and create harmony and peace in the world community, were certainly shared by Einstein — and pilloried as a Jewish conspiracy by Adolf Hitler. Considering the date of the pledge, Einstein was taking an early stand against the Fascist future into which Europe was about to descend.

Item #24023, $6,000

Einstein Reveals Reservations of Associating with Communism

ALBERT EINSTEIN, Typed Letter Signed (“A. Einstein”), in English to Professor Albert Sprague Coolidge of Harvard University, Princeton, NJ, February 16, 1934. 1p 8½ x 11 in. Envelope folds, minor spotting.


“On the one hand, the world-wide danger of fascism makes it necessary that all enemies of fascism cooperate; on the other hand, an action which has communist leanings might endanger that fight...”

This letter, in addition to underscoring Einstein’s passionate stance against fascism, is particularly important as documentary evidence of Einstein’s caution about having any dealings with communism, especially considering that the U.S. FBI, worried about Einstein’s political leanings, kept a file on Einstein that grew to 1427 pages.

Item #24885, $18,000

Alexander Stephens on Mismanagement of Confederate Government and Economy

ALEXANDER H. STEPHENS, Autograph Letter Signed as Confederate Vice President, Crawfordville, Ga., April 29, 1864, to James A. Seddon, Confederate Secretary of War. 8 pp (the first 4 and last 4 of what was a 16-page letter), 4½ x 7 in.


“You can not possibly regret more sincerely or profoundly my disagreement with members of the administration upon some of the late measures of Legislation than I do myself… [The crops] should be & should have been husbanded & guarded as gold. Not a grain of corn or blade of grass should have been wasted or lost or misapplied… Many plantations have been virtually abandoned to the negroes without any suitable superintendent. Many persons still at home under the uncertainty of getting details are failing to plant their usual crops...”

Vice President Stephens writes the Secretary of War strongly voicing his objections to acts passed by the Confederate Congress and about the economic, social, and military disintegration of the Confederacy.

Item #24014, $2,750

Hamilton Aids a Revolutionary War Loyalist:
Important N.Y. Confiscation Act Case Verdict

ALEXANDER HAMILTON, Autograph Document, 4 ½ pages (8 x 13 in.) hinged together, Supreme Court [New York], n.d. [ca. December 1784], being a special verdict of the case of James Leonard/James Jackson v. Anthony Post


Item #24628, $24,000

Hamilton Asks His College Roommate and Two Other Good Friends to Pay Their Share of Surveying Expenses for a Speculative Joint New York State Land Investment

ALEXANDER HAMILTON, Autograph Endorsement Signed, below Arthur Breese, Autograph Letter Signed, to Alexander Hamilton, September 13, [1801?], 2 pp.


Item #24642, $13,500

Hamilton’s Advice to Holland Land Company on a New Law Relating to New York State’s Prohibition Against Foreigners Owning Land

ALEXANDER HAMILTON, Autograph Manuscript Draft, to Théophile Cazenove, c. May 19, 1796. 2+ pp.


Available as part of The Alexander Hamilton Collection

It is manifestly the interest of the parties concerned to avail themselves of this act. They are now intirely at the discretion of the Government....

New York adhered to the common-law prohibition against foreigners owning land. If a citizen purchased property in his own name but the money came from a foreigner, the purchaser was considered a trustee, and the State could seize the property. But Dutch investors, second only to France in their aid to America during the Revolution, invested heavily in American stocks, bonds, and western lands, working largely through their agent Théophile Cazenove.

Item #24625
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