Presidents and Political Leaders

Listings shown are sorted alphabetically.

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Notes for some unprepared remarks
Nixon on the attack in 1956 re-election campaign

Richard Nixon unsigned holographic notes for impromptu remarks given to Republican activists probably in 1956. The notes, written in pencil, stress the need to unite in order to give Eisenhower “a Congress who will support his program.” He warned that division in the party only served “the enemy” that exaggerates differences and if there are none fabricate them and then stressed the common concerns shared by all factions in the party: “ We don’t want a return to Truman “ but crossed out an intended reference to Acheson. He then added other common interests: “Honest, Loyal, Efficient”

An accompanying typed note by Nebraska GOP National Committeewoman Edna Basten Donald explains that she was sitting next to Nixon at a Party lunch and told her he had not been told he would speak and asked for her pen so he could make some notes. This is an interesting and rare example of notes for unprepared remarks. They show how Nixon structured some of the standard themes for partisan remarks before friendly audiences during the re-election campaign. Nixon’s job in the 1956 campaign was to be the partisan attack dog to energize activists while Eisenhower campaigned as the statesman. The 5 ½ x 5 ½ square paper appears to be taken from a pocket notebook with perforations along the center. There are some wrinkles and signs of being handled but generally in very good condition. [#4329]

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Formal Bachrach photo

Striking signed formal portrait by Bachrach, seated at a desk in formal evening gown. The photo was taken in the Monroe Room of the White House shortly after becoming First Lady. The photo measures 7.25 x 9.25 and appears to have been slightly trimmed on the left side. Eleanor was not anxious to sign photos of herself. The few formal portraits she did sign were given only selectively and sparingly. Very desirable.

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Inspects the fleet with Frederic Remington
Keeps the Secretary of the Navy in the dark

Theodore Roosevelt, signed letter, 2 pages on small stationary as Assistant Secretary of the Navy August 18, 1897. TR writes to Captain Henry Lyon of the USS Dolphin arranging a three day tour of a battle ship squadron returning to Hampden Roads. TR was appointed Assistant Secretary in April and wasted little time in working independently of and even undermining his boss Secretary John Long.

In this early letter arranging an early tour of the squadron Roosevelt makes clear he wants to keep his request modest enough so as not to involve his boss. “I write to you and not to the Secretary because the Secretary is so kind that I fear if I wrote to him he might put himself to some trouble or inconvenience in arranging to have the DOLPHIN ready for me.” He then offers to take a smaller ship or whatever would be easiest for Lyon to accommodate “so that there isn’t the slightest need of bothering the Secretary about it.” In political language the letter reads: keep our boss in the dark but understand that he would order you to provide whatever I want.

This is a wonderful example of TR becoming an expert on the navy and his new position. By knowing everything and making sure department operations ran smoothly he built confidence and trust with Secretary Long. That confidence was strong enough he soon was able to end-run and act almost independent of his aging boss, essentially setting Naval policy that was to be instrumental in the upcoming Spanish-American War.

Copies of four other letters related to the tour indicate that TR was joined on the tour by some reporters and the artist Frederic Remington.

The letter and signature are in excellent condition. A nice revealing letter of how TR operated in his formative role as Assistant Secretary. [#4324]

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Pair of early signed portraits

Eisenhower, Dwight and Mamie pair of inscribed and signed 8 x 10 photos of Ike as a Five Star General and his wife Mamie. His photo is a more formal pose by Bachrach. Some creasing to the upper right corners of both and a slight smudge to the “g” in his signature but excellent images of both.

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Signer and 4th Governor of Massachusetts.

Adams appoints a Justice of the Peace with a full signature as Acting Governor, filling out the unfinished term of John Hancock who died in office. The February 1794 document is 10 3/4 x 16 1/2, with some fold weaknesses and partial separation, which has been arrested by silk backing. The signature is away from the folds and just underneath the intact paper seal. A great example of his signature. [#3606]

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Concern for Arthur days after Garfield is shot
rare letter on Vice President's Chamber stationary

Chester Arthur scarce letter on Vice President’s Chamber stationary thanking a concerned correspondent just days after Garfield was shot. The July 22, 1881 letter, signed “C.A. Arthur” is toned with mat burns at edges from prior framing. Arthur had one of the shortest tenures as Vice President, making letters from that period far less common than his letters as President. This one has nice implied reference to Garfield’s assassination. [#4366]

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Appointment of John Cisco as Assistant Treasurer for New York

James Buchanan, signed document as President, May 3, 1858, countersigned by Lewis Cass as Secretary of State. Buchanan appoints John J. Cisco as Assistant Treasurer and Treasurer of the Assay Office of New York.

This is a relatively high ranking appointment as New York was the financial center of the country and the Assistant Treasurer also had significant influence over patronage. Cisco was first appointed by Franklin Pierce. This is his commission as a carry-over appointee by Buchanan, reflecting the confidence and respect he commanded from money and political interests. In spite of his strong Democratic ties and immediate letter of resignation upon Lincoln’s Inauguration Cisco was asked to stay in his position during Lincoln’s term.

Buchanan’s signature is particularly strong and dark. There are numerous folds, typical for documents like this, which have been relatively flattened over time. There is one vertical fold running between the president’s first and last name. The white paper seal is perfect with a strong clean impression of the eagle seal. Overall in very fresh condition, except for the folds. [#4315]

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Executive Mansion card
First Lady

Executive Mansion card signed "Frances F. Cleveland". The card measures approximately
4 1/2 x 2 3/4. The First Lady has signed in a brown ink. The card is in excellent condition.

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Early Bill Clinton handwritten letter
42nd President

Autograph letter signed, on personal stationary, August 24 [1976] 4to. A scarce personal note to an early supporter. This letter was written in 1976, the year he ran for Attorney General and won his first office. The stationary is simply headed “Bill Clinton”. In his hand the future president thanks a supporter for lunch and adds an intriguing line, “I have done what I could.” He has signed it with his first name only and a large paraph. One can only guess at what he had tried to do: broker a political deal, win over a possible supporter or disarm a potential critic?

In 1974 Clinton launched his political career by running for the United States House of Representatives. He lost that race which was his good luck since it opened the door to state office and eventually the Governor’s office which launched his presidential career. This early letter was written just as his political rocket was about to take off.

The letter has some minor spotting away from the writing and signature and is accompanied by the original envelope addressed in Clinton’s hand. Early letters before he held office are very scarce and this handwritten example with the envelope makes for a nice investment opportunity.

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Early letter with his scarce early signature form

A scarce, early two page handwritten letter on June 18, 1897 from Northampton, Massachusetts to Constanace Briggs. Completely filling two separate 8 x 10 sheets of paper, Coolidge tried to trace his roots and an ancestor’s participation in the American Revolution. Uncharacteristically lengthy for Coolidge, this letter is in fine condition with a perfect example of his early signature "Calvin Coolidge Jr." He dropped the "Jr." early in his adulthood. #1036

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Coolidge greets returning Massachusetts soldiers from World War I
with small archive related to Wood's personal aide

Calvin Coolidge signed letter, one page, Boston, April 10, 1919, Executive Department, State House. Coolidge thanks Admiral Spencer S. Wood for arranging a boat to take him to the Mongolia where he greeted returning WWI soldiers from the Massachusetts 26th Division. He signed with a large full signature “Calvin Coolidge”. There are also some other clips, photographs and documents related to Ensign Milton McDonald, aide to Admiral Wood, whom Coolidge references in the letter. One of the letters is a directive signed by Sec. of the Navy Josephus Daniels appointing McDonald as Wood’s private aide. The letter has some mounting remnants and some compacting of the paper in the top and lower sections from mounting. In all, a nice archive connecting Coolidge to World War I. [#4288]

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Formal Harris & Ewing portrait as First Lady
First Lady

Formal signed photo as First Lady. Taken by the notable Washington photographs Harris and Ewing the 6 x 9 image is on printed on a larger photographer’s mat measuring 8.5 x 12. The First Lady signs just below the image “To Mr. Robert M. Goff of ____ Academy Sincerely yours Grace Coolidge June, 1924.” The photograph and autograph are in superb condition. [#4304]

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First Lady (1953-1961)

Signed Inaugural cachet. The unaddressed cover shows small photos of both Presidents Eisenhower and Nixon and is stamped with the Eisenhower 8 cent stamp. It carries a Washington D.C. Inauguration Day cancellation commemorating Nixon’s second Inaugural. The cover was created by the Dwight D. Eisenhower Philatelic and Historical Society. It is personally signed in dark black maker “Mamie Dowd Eisenhower”. Excellent condition.

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On the health of Webster's predecessor in the Senate
Statesman and 1860 Vice Presidential candidate

Autograph letter signed, Washington, February 4, 1827, one page on a folded four page sheet with franked cover addressed to General H.A. A. Dearborn.

Everett, then serving as a Representative from Massachusetts, reports on events in Congress including legislation on bankruptcy and an apparent effort to provide some job or appointment for retiring Massachusetts Senator Elijah Hunt Mills. “E. H. Mills appears to be gaining strength in the house. I wait with anxiety to hear from the Senate. I fear these efforts of his friends will be unavailing even if successful. His health does not I think promise him the Continuance of a capacity to work, if it does of life.” Mills was elected to fill a vacancy in the Senate and then won a term of his own in 1820. He lost re-election in 1826 to fellow Federalist Daniel Webster. His term ended in March 1827, a month after Everett’s letter, and he died two years later. His health did keep him from ever seeking public office again.

Henry A. S. Dearborn was an officer in the War of 1812, helping defend Boston Harbor. He held several local positions including the politically important post of Collector of Customs for Boston when he received this letter. In the following few years he would be elected to the state Legislature and then the U.S. House of Representative. His father was Revolutionary War General Henry Dearborn who also served as Jefferson’s Secretary of War. The file docket on the back panel above the wax seal is almost certainly in his hand.

Everett was one of the leading orators in America in the mid 1800’s when public oratory was in high gear as a combination of entertainment and intellectual pursuit. For all of his contemporary fame, power and success he is perhaps best remembered today as a man who twice played a minor supporting role in Abraham Lincoln’s political life. In 1860 Everett was the unsuccessful candidate for Vice President with John Bell as the Presidential nominee on the Constitutional Union ticket. One of four parties on the ballot that year, the Bell-Everett ticket came in third winning only 39 of the 303 electoral votes. In 1863 Everett delivered the main address at the dedication of the National Cemetery at Gettysburg. The dedication was moved back from a planned September date to November to allow Everett the extra time to prepare his important address.

Folds, with some separation beginning at one fold, a pencil docket in the top left margin and some loss of paper above the address panel of the back page. [#1865]

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T.R.'s Vice President
Impressive potrait signed

Charles Fairbanks signed photo. The formal image, approximately 5 x 7 is lightly affixed to a larger photographers mat, approximately 6 x 9. Fairbanks has inscribed and signed it, most likely as Vice President, “Cordially yours, Charles W. Fairbanks” below his image, on the matting. It is also signed and dated in pencil “’05” by the photographer discretely to the side of Fairbank’s signature.

There is strong, almost even toning throughout although still with strong contract between the signature and background. There are bubbles above the image, caused because the toning did not reach those spots. Overall only fair to good condition although the image is quite impressive and the ink contrast is very good. [#4238]

Ford, Gerald
United Nations Association honoring Sec. of State Kissinger

Signed letter on White House stationary, August 1975, to the US Representative of the United Nations Association of the US. Ford gently declines an invitation to the UN’s 30th Anniversary Concert and Dinner as well as a special lunch to honor his Secretary of State Henry Kissinger. Nice association with a very large black ink “Jerry Ford” signature.

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Ford welcomes Party unity after '76 GOP nomination win against Reagan
38th President

Gerald Ford signed letter, one page, The White House, August 30, 1976. Two weeks before this letter, Ford had narrowly defeated Ronald Reagan for the Republican nomination. California Congressman Del Clawson sent the President a pledge of support to Ford after the convention.

Party unity was essential if Ford was going to have any chance in the general election, particularly in California. Ford is quick and gracious to reach out to his former House colleague Del Clawson who voted for fellow Californian Ronald Reagan. "Thank you so much for your warm message of congratulations and support. It is reassuring to know that your confidence and loyalty will be reflected in the total team effort which will bring us to victory on November 2."

The 1976 Republican National Convention was the last meaningful convention to actually determined the outcome of a presidential nomination. Reagan had challenged the incumbent president for the nomination. Ford went into the convention with a lead in pledged delegates but he did not have a majority. The lead-up to convention balloting included intense personal cajoling and pressure from both camps. A key procedural Floor vote went Ford's way creating the momentum for the actual nomination win of 1,187 votes to Reagan's 1,070.

Ford, of course lost the general election to Jimmy Carter. Four years later Carter faced his own party fight when he was challenged by Senator Ted Kennedy for the nomination. That fight was over before the convention but he had to face Reagan in the general election. Reagan and Ford had flirted with teaming up in 1980, with Ford running as Reagan's vice presidential running mate. It is arguable that Ford's convention victory of Reagan, referenced in this letter, paved the way for a stronger Reagan candidacy in 1980 that ushered the Reagan era.

Del Clawson was a member of the Church of Latter Day Saints, one of the first Mormon's to serve in Congress outside of Utah. He was a member of the House from 1963-to 1978.

The letter is in excellent, fresh condition with an inconspicuous single envelope fold. It is accompanied by the original unstamped White House envelope, indicating that the personal message from the President was hand-delivered to the Congressman's office. It is boldly signed in a heavy black ink "Jerry Ford". This is a very desirable Presidential letter referencing the last great convention fight for a presidential nomination. Although it does not mention Reagan by name it is also a wonderful association piece for Reagan collectors. [#3019]

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Lincoln's First Vice President

Autograph letter signed Bangor, Maine June 29, 1885 making some travel plans. Routine content but a very clean example of a letter from Abraham Lincoln's first Vice President. # 4077

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Harding helps a Civil War veteran
29th President (1921-1923)

Autograph letter signed, Marion Star stationary, July 26, 1907, large 4to. Harding writes to Ohio Governor Andrew Harris of Ohio recommending L. H. Williams, to a state position. In the text Harding points out that Williams is a Civil War veteran and past Commander of the G.A.R. of Ohio. The oversized sheet measures 8 ½ x 11 and is hinged on the left side to a much larger sheet, 10 ¼ x 14 ½, used for display by a previous collector. The presentation note at the foot of the sheet reads in part “Fine specimen of one of the rarest of Presidential Autographs.” This was most likely prepared in the late 20’s when Harding’s material would have been in high demand and short supply following his death. The letter is docketed , shows some minor toning or yellowing in the center and there is some slight smudging or ink bleeding of the “H” in Harding’s signature, otherwise in excellent condition and a striking display presentation. [# 2194]

Scarce First Lady autograph
Harrison, Caroline Scott
First Lady (1889-1892)

Signed card. The 3 1/4 x 2 1/4 card is nicely centered with a full signature "Caroline Scott Harrison". It is double matted into a window matting with a cabinet size photo of the First Lady. The photo may be a later reprint or reproduction of a CDV or possible a cabinet card image. The card is mounted in the frame with mylar corner mounts and floated in the window matting so all corners and edges are completely visible. It has not been examined out of the frame so the back has not been examines. The ink is light, form a dry nib, to the "C" and "S" to the first two names. The overall size of the frame is 10 1/2 x 12 and in excellent condition. [#3163]

Caroline Harrison's autograph is a surprisingly scarce and difficult to come by. Most collectors have to settle for the autograph of Harrison's second wife, Mary Scott Harrison, his widow's niece. Although Mary and Benjamin were married after he left the White House she survived him by several decades and her material is plentiful but she was never the First Lady. Caroline on the other hand was the activist First Lady who helped modernize the White House, established several traditions, served as the first President-General of the Daughters of the American Revolution and was actively involved in promoting his career. In her final year of his Administration she became quite ill and died just a few weeks before his defeat for re-election.

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Hayes remembers Sheridan’s Ride
19th President (1877-1881)

Autograph Letter Signed, January 25, 1887, large 8vo, Spiegel Grove, one page. Hayes sends his longtime friend Thomas Donaldson a detailed recollection of the Famous Ride of General Philip Sheridan during the battle of Cedar Creek in 1864. Serving under Sheridan and witnesses to the General’s ride was the Ohio 23rd Regiment of Volunteers which included future presidents Rutherford B. Hayes and William McKinley. Hayes was persuaded thirty years later to write his recollections of the ride and in this transmittal letter he writes:

I hate writing an old story. Above all I hate to copy. Writing a fresh article out of a not-full brain is delightful. The other thing is cold coffee. So I send you just as it came the promised Sheridans Ride. I would like a copy of it, if without too much trouble you can have a clerk or the boy do it for me. …”

Thomas Donaldson was an Ohioan native who served in the 19th Regiment, Ohio Volunteer Infantry where he was wounded. After the war he became active in politics and worked for Hayes’s first campaign as Governor. Donaldson was an enthusiastic collector of Americana, including autographs and minerals. His interest in minerals gave him a connection to the Smithsonian and he began to actively acquire antiquities and Americana for the Smithsonian, himself and Rutherford Hayes. The two maintained their friendship after Hayes left office.

The recollection of Sheridan’s Ride. According to Donaldson’s memoir, he accompanied Hayes on October 21, 1886 to the ceremonies of the Loyal Legion of the United States, where General Phil Sheridan was inducted as Commander-in-chief. After the ceremonies the party went to the Union League Club in Philadelphia to view a portrait of Sheridan during the ride painted by Thomas Buchanan Read. The portrait now hangs in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington. Read, also wrote a famous and popular poem about the ride. In viewing the portrait Hayes said “Get me a copy of this lithograph; I am one of the few men who saw this ride.” Donaldson then noted that he received an account in full January 25, 1878. In all likelihood, Donaldson, as a famous collector of Americana probably, asked Hayes during the October visit to Philadelphia for a written account. The letter offered here is the cover letter responding to Donaldson’s request.

Excerpt from Donaldson’s Memoir
[Philadelphia] Thursday, Oct. 21st, 1886.—I met ex-President Hayes by appointment at his hotel this morning at 9. We walked to McClees’ Gallery (art), and then to the Pennsylvania depot, Broad Street. Here he bought a ticket to Fremont and his sleeping-car berth. We sat for an hour in the station chatting, then went to the rooms of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Seventh and 13th Streets, where General Phil. Sheridan was inducted into the office of commander-in-chief of the Loyal Legion of the United States, vice General W. S. Hancock, deceased. The ceremony was very simple. The persons present sat on two rows of chairs in the great lecture hall, say 25 in all.
The recorder, Col. J. P. Nicholson, sat at a table near the window, and ex-President Hayes on a chair facing the two lines of members.
General Sheridan was in about the middle of the first row. Ex-President Hayes as first vice President presided. He used an ivory gavel. He took his seat, then shortly after arose and rapped the members to their feet, announcing prayer by Chaplain H. C. Trumbull. Mr. Trumbull walked to the right front of the first row, held up his hands, and prayed a fairly long prayer. Then all were again seated.
President Hayes called General Sheridan to the front, about five steps, and announced to him the fact of his election, and then said "I now induct you into the office," (every one present was in plain clothes). General Sheridan took the gavel, walked to the table near the recorder, and made a two-minute address of thanks. Then there was much cheering. President Hayes answered him in a five minutes speech, a most excellent one, too, and the order adjourned to the Union League [Club] to lunch. The induction was a simple and plain affair, decidedly Republican, and to my liking. It lasted about 18 minutes.
At two o’clock I went with Ex-President Hayes to the room of the Geo. G. Meade Post No. 1 [G.A.R.], on Chestnut Street, about Eleventh, where he met General Sheridan and many soldiers. In the room there is a replica of [Thomas] Buchanan Read’s ride (the picture) say 4 x 6 feet (?). We walked up to this and General Hayes said, "Get me a copy of this lithograph; I am one of the few men who saw this ride." (He gave me an account in full afterwards, viz. Jan. 25, 1887.) Sheridan said, "I recall you; you were wounded and laying down and I met you again in that fight at or near the end;" and then walked away.
President Hayes said to me, "I think Sheridan a first-class man and a thorough good fellow." I replied, "Yes, I know him to be both."
President Hayes and myself walked through John Wanamaker’s stores a few minutes afterward, and then took the car to my house. Here he remained from 2 until 6. He looked about him in his inquiring way, chatting meanwhile. Speaking of Garfield, he said: "You know he was not a particularly great man, but one with much aptitude for study, and for handling of acquired knowledge. He was not a very brave man in legislation as you also know; his troubles in the Credit Mobilier days nearly upset him. About 1872, while this trouble was upon him, he came to Columbus on some public ceremony. I was governor of the State at the time. He began to chat with me about his political troubles. He was in great distress. I replied, ‘Garfield, cheer up; don’t go around moping; it amuses and encourages your enemies, because they see you are annoyed. All men who are in the lead must be abused, and abuse does a public man good; so cheer up; you will come out all right.’ He grasped my hand and thanked me most cordially. At least forty times afterward during his life he mentioned this to me, and said that I was the only public man in this country who said a pleasant or encouraging word to him, during that time. General Garfield was an orator of force and fire, and after preparation, a strong man in debate."
I read to the President my summary of Mr. Blaine. He replied: "That is beautifully done, but does not do full justice to your discernment or perception. Mr. Blaine does want to be President, now more so than ever. He is making the move for it. He sees two things ahead which promise our party much trouble. The prohibition and labor movements. He is patching up the prohibition danger as well as he can, and is in the tide of the labor movement; of course, he wants and expects to be the party nominee next time."
I read him something of General Grant’s, and said incidentally, "I think that Grant never wrote the second volume of his book; I mean all, especially the last part. He answered, "You are mistaken; he did. I was in New York City in May, 1885, two months or so before the General’s death, and had a long chat with him. He said to me that he had finished his book, and was glad as he was so near his end; that he had been astonished at the amount of work he had been able to accomplish, more than if he had been in good health. Let me tell you the secret of why Grant’s book is so interesting. He had told and retold scores of times the details of that work and many of the stories and incidents therein I have heard him relate. He condensed his matter by talking it over so often, that he could easily write it out and it became better for each telling. You will find that all great and lasting literary efforts have been worked out about the same way, talked and written and re-written and thus condensed. It is the true method."
The Ex-President took dinner [luncheon] with us and is a jolly table companion, eating and talking the while. He is natural and quaint. Our children agreed that he was "first class." His breaking crackers into a cup of tea and eating them with a spoon, just as they do, tickled them greatly.
At 6.30 we went to the monthly dinner at the "Clover Club" of which I am a member, at the Hotel Bellevue. As we entered the room the forty members and guests gave him a hearty cheer. He sat to my left, and next but to one to Col. A. K. McClure, and they chatted an hour about the battle of Winchester.
Mr. M[oses] P. Handy, the president of the Club, offered Mr. Hayes the first toast and all arose and drank it. He merely acknowledged it by a sentence or two. About 8 o’clock Mr. Handy again called him up, and he made a very neat speech; I closed, and then we retired. We met Major Fred Boland at the door of the Hotel and together we rode to the room of Post 2 [G.A.R.], 13th and Spring Garden Streets, where President Hayes was given a most hearty reception. Here he made a half hour speech; afterwards we escorted him to the Pennsylvania station, and at 11.20 he left for home.
All my intercourse with Ex-President Hayes leaves the impression of a thoroughly natural and unaffected man, with an enormous store of information; a good every-day man, an all around citizen, and a full American.

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Presidential date photos to the President's Stenographer
31st President (1929-1933)

Pair of signed photos to Ruth White. Ruth White was a White House stenographer from the Hoover through the Eisenhower Administrations. She would marry George Durno, a Washington reporter for the International News Service. The photos are accompanied by a letter from Hoover’s secretary Lawrence Richey, two days before Hoover left office, thanking White for her service to him and the President. There is also a copy of the typed transcript of a 1970 interview White had with an historian for the Herbert Hoover Library Oral History project.

Herbert Hoover photo is a formal Bachrach portrait inscribed on the photographer’s margin “To Mrs. Ruth S. White with kind regards of Herbert Hoover”. The image is 7 ¼ x 9 ¼ and the overall dimensions are 10 x 13. There is slight, almost insignificant toning at the very top edge from prior framing, otherwise in superb condition and an outstanding example of a presidential signed photo of Hoover.

Lou Henry Hoover photo measures 7 ¼ x 9 ¼ and is inscribed in the white background “To Miss Ruth S. White with cordial greetings Lou Henry Hoover”. Minor edge burns from framing. It appears that the photo may have been slightly trimmed for framing. Lou Hoover is quite uncommon in signed photos. [# 2142]

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desriable White House letter as First Lady

Lady Bird Johnson signed letter as First Lady with a holograph salutation. The First Lady thanks Gerald Wagner for a white orchid and a United Nations concert. She has crossed out the formal salutation and handwritten “Gerry” as well as signing the letter in full “Lady Bird Johnson”. The letter is on White House stationary with the blind embossed presidential seal. The October 23, 1968 letter was written just two weeks before the election of Richard Nixon and the start of her transition back to private life. There is a stamped docket on the reverse of the letter. Although not a rare autograph, Lady Bird’s autographs as First Lady are seen less often than other periods and her White House letters are desirable. [# 4225]

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Scarce Presidential Pardon
14th President

Signed document, June 17, 1854, Washington, 2 pages. A signed presidential pardon granted John Mullen, convicted of larceny in the District of Columbia. Mullen was sentenced to six months a fine of $1. Mullen was sentenced during the “December term” of the Criminal Court and the pardon was issued in June. It is likely that Mullen was a penniless thief who wouldn’t be able to come up with the $1 fine. Rather than have the government house and feed him for the full six months or beyond if he wasn’t able to raise the $1 it was probably more cost effective just to release him.

The pardon is written on an oversized folio sheet measuring 10¼ x 15. Pierce has added a very large, black signature and it has been countersigned by William Marcy, Secretary of State. The signatures are on the second page which is the reverse side of the sheet. A horizontal fold separation just below Pierce’s signature was once repaired with tape. The old tape has been professionally removed and the separation strengthened with proper archival methods, although some slight discoloration remains along those lines from the old tape. A vertical fold separation runs through the “a” of Franklin and has also been professionally strengthened but this was mercifully spared the earlier cheap tape treatment causing no discoloration through the large, black signature of Franklin Pierce. Marcy’s signature shows some ink smudge to the first two initials. The seal is a near perfect example with a clear imprint of the embossed eagle and only minor chipping to three teeth of the seal. Overall the document shows some slight yellowing or toning but is in overall fresh, white condition.

While there are plenty of warrants to affix seals to pardons, actual Presidential pardons are hard to come by and can safely be considered as rare forms of Presidential documents. Pierce pardons are particularly hard to find.

Signed by 5 Presidents
Presidents signed photo
George W. Bush as President

Color photo of the North Portico of the White House matted and signed by 5 Presidents with an autopen of Ronald Reagan. Gerald Ford and Richard Nixon both added their Presidential numbers and George H. Bush dated it, as President. George H. W. Bush and Jimmy Carter added large felt tip signatures. There is room for additional signatures. Some bumps at edges but makes for a dramatic display piece.

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First Lady

Signed White House card. The 4 1/4 x 2 3/4 card has been boldly signed with a signature that almost fills the card. There is a light, almost unperceivable indentation mark from a paper clip at the top center which reaches down to the starting stroke of the "R" in Roosevelt. Overall, an excellent example of what is surprisingly becoming a difficult to find White House card signed by our longest service First Lady. [#3013]

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Signed formal portrait by Harris & Ewing signed in full on the lower white border. The piece measures 7 x 11. There is mounting glue residue on the back and some matt burning on the front from prior framing. FDR’ signature is on the lighter side from fading but completely legible and visible. Priced accordingly.

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NY Governor, 1868 Democratic candidate for President

Autograph letter signed, Washington, March 14, 1876, one page, 8vo. Seymour sends a small donation for a project and apologized that he can’t do more. Seymour served two non-consecutive terms as Governor of New York and was the unsuccessful Democratic nominee for President in 1868 losing to General Ulysses S. Grant.

There are some fold separations beginning on the right edge and some staining also along the right edge.

FDR speechwriter and screenwriter
Sherwood, Robert

Playwright, screenwriter, FDR speechwriter. Signed letter, Dec. 1947, mentioning his firend the poet Arthur Guiterman. #4145

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33rd President (1945-1953)

Signed letter, The White House, February 7, 1946, 1 page. Truman writes to Dow Walker, National Commander of the Disabled American Veterans, thanking him for a telegram. He signs in full “Harry S. Truman”

The second blank page of the presidential stationary has been removed but the letter is in otherwise fine condition with a nice bold signature. [#2736]