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"I have been accepted in Boston University Graduate School as a regular student and a candidate for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the field of Systematic Theology": Exceptionally Rare Autograph Letter Signed by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. before beginning graduate studies at Boston University in 1951
Typescript autograph letter signed by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. requesting housing upon his acceptance to Boston University Graduate School. The letter, dated June 15th 1951 and addressed to Dean Charles W. Alter, Boston University Graduate School, reads, “Dear Dean Alter, I have been accepted in Boston University Graduate School as a regular student and a candidate for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the field of Systematic Theology. I am now interested in finding living accommodations on the campus, or at least very near by. A single room would be preferable. If such is possible I would appreciate having it reserved. I am also interested in applying for a graduate Fellowship. Please send me the necessary information at this point along with an application blank. Thanks in advance for your cooperation, I am Sincerely yours, Martin L. King, Jr.” King later recalled his experience with housing bias in 1951 Boston in an interview with the Boston Globe in 1965, “I remember very well trying to find a place to live. I went into place after place where there were signs that rooms were for rent. They were for rent until they found out I was a Negro, and suddenly they had just been rented.” Double matted and framed, with a photograph of a young King. The entire piece measures 14 inches by 21.75 inches. This letter offers an extraordinary glimpse into the education of the great African-American Civil Rights leader, exemplifying his own experiences with the systemic racism in 1950s American society.
Government of the Dalai Lama, 1959.
First edition of this important document, which details the historical relationship between Tibet and China from the 7th century to the 1950s and presents arguments supporting Tibet’s claim for sovereignty. Octavo, original printed flexible board wrappers, with the title and date printed in red letters. Boldly signed by His Holiness the Dalai Lama on the front panel. Table of contents and 63 pages of text. In 1959 the Dalai Lama sought support from the U.S. and other nations to recognize their government in exile and to bring their case for Tibetan sovereignty and against Chinese aggression before the United Nations. It is necessary to distinguish between two 1959 publications under the same title. The more common (today) appears to be an octavo volume of 49 pages, which several sources attribute to the Central Electric Press in Delhi, India. [The British Library and Harvard University each has a copy in that smaller format; WorldCat details 10 locations of the 49 p. 8vo edition, under two OCLC numbers]. Our publication, a mimeographic duplication from a document produced on a typewriter, printed on rectos only of quarto sized sheets, has 63 leaves and an un-numbered first leaf [“Table of Contents”]. Technical limitations mean that our publication in quarto mimeographed format, is both more fragile by nature and less likely to have been issued in a large number of copies. Considering that the 14th Dalai Lama spent all but the first 90 days of 1959 residing in exile in Dharamshala, in the state of Himachal Pradesh in northern India, it is likely that our publication was produced there. Historical Context: In 1959, within days of the rapidly devolving March uprising in Lhasa, the Dalai Lama and his retinue fled Tibet with the help of the CIA’s Special Activities Division. They crossed the border into India on 30 March 1959, and soon afterward, the Dalai Lama set up the Government of Tibet in Exile in Dharamshala, receiving support from the CIA including a personal annual stipend of $180,000 and other material support from at least 1959 until about 1974. (CIA support for the Government of the Dalai Lama in Exile and other potential Tibetan assets reportedly totalled about $1.7 million per annum). In April 1959 the Dalai Lama sent a message to the U.S. Government requesting that the U.S. formally recognize the Free Tibetan Government and that he encourage other nations to do so. Under Secretary of State C. Douglas Dillon advised President Eisenhower that the U.S. should “avoid taking any position which might encourage the Dalai Lama to seek international recognition.” Despite considerable U.S. covert support of the Tibetans’ efforts to oust the Chinese, the official U.S. position held that Tibet was an autonomous country under Chinese suzerainty. The State Department believed this position better served America’s broader foreign policy interest viz. China and India. In fact, the Eisenhower administration (both the State Department and the CIA) restrained the Tibetans from presenting their case against Chinese aggression, instead skirting the political issues and treading the softer line of human rights violations and cultural oppression. The Tibetans finally enlisted Ireland and Malaya to request “The Question of Tibet” to be added to the U.N. agenda for its 14th session. Consequently, the United Nations’ Resolution 1353 (XIV) on Tibet was passed in October 1959. This first U.N. resolution on Tibet did not address the sovereignty issue, but voiced their “grave concern at the continued violation of the fundamental rights and freedoms of Tibetans” and calling for “respect of the fundamental human rights of the Tibetan people and for their distinctive cultural and religious life.” For an interesting exposition of this era of Tibetan diplomacy, see “Tibet Issue at the UN: a case study in informal diplomacy, (1950-65)” by Kalzang Diki Bhutia. Either directly or indirectly, this publication was made possible by support from the CIA; it is a fascination sidelight of history that the official US government position was not in alignment with this text, and also, that no copy of our rare publication seems to have survived in any institutional library in the United States. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box.
First Edition of "this Cornerstone of American Political Journalism" Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail 72; Signed by Hunter S. Thompson, George McGovern, Jimmy Carter, Gary Hart and Illustrator Ralph Steadman
San Francisco: Arrow Books, 1973.
First edition of the author’s third book and hallmark of campaign journalism. Octavo, original black boards. Signed by Hunter Thompson on the half-title page and subjects, George McGovern, Jimmy Carter, Gary Hart and illustrator, Ralph Steadman. Fine in a near fine first issue price-clipped dust jacket with the white boarder around the photograph of Thompson and McGovern on the rear panel. The book is notable for its introduction not only to the candidates of 1972 but also its early glimpses of future political leaders. Gary Hart of Colorado, who served as McGovern’s campaign manager and would later run for and win a seat in the United States Senate, and Georgia Governor Jimmy Carter, who would himself capture the 1976 Democratic nomination and Presidency. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. A unique example with this collection of signatures.
"I salute you with continual friendship & respect. Th. Jefferson”: one page autograph letter signed by thomas jefferson regarding his library
One page autograph letter signed by Thomas Jefferson regarding duties for a shipment of books for his second library at Monticello. Address to David Gelston, esq, who was the Collector of the Port of New York (appointed by Jefferson in 1801). The letter reads, “On my return home after some absence I found here your favors of Sept. 2 & 15. stating the amount of freight & duties on my books … Having no medium of remittance but in the bills of our banks I enclose 8.D presuming they are negotiable with you, and that the fractional surplus may cover their discount at market. I salute you with continual friendship & respect. Th. Jefferson.” The letter measures 9.75 inches by 7.75 inches. Matted and framed with a portrait.
"A man does what he must — in spite of personal consequences, in spite of obstacles and dangers, and pressures — and that is the basis of all human morality": First Edition of Kennedy's Profiles In Courage; Signed by Him to Fell U.S. Senator Frederick Payne
New York: Harper & Brothers, Publishers, 1956.
First edition of Kennedy’s Pulitzer Prize-winning work. Octavo, original half cloth, with eight pages of black-and-white photogravures. Foreword by Allan Nevins. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “To Fred Payne with the highest regards John Kennedy.” The recipient Frederick G. Payne was a United States Senator from Maine from 1953 to 1959. He previously served as the 60th Governor of Maine from 1949 to 1952. Kennedy and Payne worked together in the Senate in the 1950s and were close friends. “From the Personal Library of Senator Frederick G. Payne” stamped opposite the front free endpaper, near fine in a near fine dust jacket. Jacket design by Phil Grushkin. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. A nice association linking these two United States Senators.
The Manuscript Edition of Theodore Roosevelt's Monumental Work The Winning of the West; One of 200 Numbered Copies
New York : G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1900.
Limited edition, number 72 of 200 copies of the manuscript edition of The Winning of the West. Quarto, 4 volumes, bound in full publisher’s morocco, gilt titles to the spine, gilt tooling to the front and rear panels, top edge gilt, pastedowns full morocco with inlay. The manuscript page in this example opposite the limitation page and reads, “at the expense of the government; and on the lower Ohio in 1793 and ’93 there were plenty of men who, in the event of a campaign, hoped to make profit out of the goods, horses and cattle they supplied the soldiers.” Portrait frontispiece in volume one, illustrated throughout, with frontispieces in each volume, folding maps, and other plates. In near fine condition. Housed in two custom slipcases. A very nice set.
"I share entirely your view that it is vitally necessary for everyone in the Middle East to live in peace": Autograph Letter Signed by David Ben-Gurion
Autograph letter signed by the founder of modern day Israel and first prime minister David Ben-Gurion. It reads, “Sdeh. Boker, 28. 2. 70 Dear Mr. George P. Viegelmann, Jr. I share entirely your view that it is vitally necessary for everyone in the Middle East to live in peace. I am expressing a private view: I would be ready to give up a great Part of the areas which we hold since the six day war, if this would bring peace; by peace I mean friendship with our Arab neighbors and cooperation politically, economically and culturally, but perhaps only Russia can bring this about. I even doubt whether the American Gov. can achieve that. In the future there may be a change in Egypt. David Ben-Gurion.” This letter is a very unique piece of history, particularly in regards to Israeli-Arab relations and the study of peace in general. While publicly Ben-Gurion was the undoubted leader in Zionism, privately at the end of his life, he began to have other opinions. He desired peace even if it meant giving up land that they had fought to obtain. Ben-Gurion’s thoughts on peace in his latter years is corroborated by the recent documentary, Ben-Gurion, Epilogue. This movie features footage that was taken in 1968 and only recently discovered. In the footage he explains that Israel’s moral compass was inexorably tied to its treatment of the non-Jews living under its rule. Double matted and framed opposite a photograph of Ben-Gurion. The entire piece measures 15 inches by 16.5 inches.
“INJUSTICE ANYWHERE IS A THREAT TO JUSTICE EVERYWHERE": First Edition of Martin Luther's King Jr.'s Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos or Community?; inscribed by him
New York: Harper & Row, Publishers, 1967.
First edition of King’s “last grand expression of his vision” (Cornel West). Octavo, original half cloth, illustrated with eight pages of black-and-white photogravures. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “To Wilfred Cohen, In appreciation for your great support. Martin Luther King Jr.” Fine in a fine dust jacket. Jacket design by Ronald Clyne. Jacket photograph of Martin Luther King, Jr. by Bob Fitch. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box.
Rare large format of this famous photograph of the The Big Four, or the Council of Four, which refers to the four top Allied powers of World War I and their leaders who met at the Paris Peace Conference in January 1919. From left to right they are: David Lloyd George of Britain, Premier Vittorio Orlando of Italy, Premier Georges Clemenceau of France, and President Woodrow Wilson of the United States. Boldly signed by Lloyd George, Clemenceau, and Wilson. While there were more than twenty Allied nations that met at Paris Peace Conference, the Big Four were the leading architects of the Treaty of Versailles which was signed by Germany on June 28, 1919. Double matted and framed. The entire piece measures 23.25 inches by 20.5 inches. An exceptional piece, rare and desirable signed.
"No one quality by itself makes a good man or woman; many are essential; but three especially - courage, straightforward honesty, and common sense": Rare autograph quotation book lengthily inscribed by Theodore Roosevelt as President in addition to many others including William Howard Taft, John Muir, John Burroughs, and Bernard Baruch
ROOSEVELT, Theodore; William Howard Taft; John Muir; John Burroughs; Bernard Baruch et al. [Olga Roosevelt].
Olga Roosevelt’s autograph book, lengthily inscribed and signed by Theodore Roosevelt as President of the United States, William Howard Taft as Vice President of the United States and several other famous figures of the era, including naturalists John Muir and John Burroughs and financier Bernard Baruch. Octavo, bound in full vellum with hand painted decorations to the spine and panels, patterned endpapers. Inscribed and signed by Theodore Roosevelt with a lengthy quotation, “No one quality by itself makes a good man or woman; many are essential; but three especially – courage, straightforward honesty, and common sense. Theodore Roosevelt July 23rd 1903.” Inscribed by William Howard Taft “For Miss Olga Roosevelt with best wishes of William H. Taft May 23 1910.” Inscribed by American naturalist John Burroughs, “The most precious things of life are without money & without price John Burroughs Sept 8, 1903.” Inscribed by the President of Cornell University and United States Ambassador to Germany Jacob Gould Schurman, “Beauty, graceful manners, good temper, common sense, and a kind heart: these are the qualities that make a woman to be beloved and powerful. J.G. Schurman East Hampton September 14th 1903.” Additionally inscribed by Alfred W.S. Garden, American diplomat Robert Underwood Johnson, American screenwriter Daniel Carson Goodman, and American naval officer Leigh Carlyle Palmer. Signed by John Muir and signed and dated by Bernard Baruch “B. Baruch Jan 20th 1920.” From the collection of Theodore Roosevelt’s niece, Olga Roosevelt. Roosevelt was the heiress to a fortune of several million dollars left her by her mother. She made her debut in Washington in 1908 and married Dr. Breckenridge Bayne in 1911. In very good condition. An exceptional collection of signatures with noted provenance.
"Nonviolence is directed against forces of evil rather than against persons who happen to be doing the evil. It is evil that the nonviolent resister seeks to defeat, not the persons victimized by evil": First Edition of Stride Toward Freedom: The Montgomery Story; Signed by Martin Luther King, Jr.
New York: Harper & Brothers, Publishers, 1958.
First edition of Dr. Martin Luther King’s first book. Octavo, original half cloth. Boldly signed by Martin Luther King, Jr. on the front free endpaper. Review copy, with the slip laid in, near fine in a very good dust jacket with some fading to the spine and light wear. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. First printings are uncommon signed.
“For in the end, it is all about memory, its sources and its magnitude, and, of course, its consequences": Rare First Edition of La Nuit; Inscribed by Elie Wiesel to Abba Eban
Paris: Les Editions De Minuit, 1958.
First French edition (preceding the first English edition) of the Wiesel’s classic first work. Octavo, original wrappers. Association copy, inscribed by the author to Abba Eban, “Pour Eban- le a sa propre commencement a sa historie: la voice- Elie W. New York, 1967.” Translated as, “The beginning of his own history Elie W.” As it increased in popularity, Wiesel’s Night was translated into 30 languages and prompted meetings with several important literary and political figures including Saul Bellow and Abba Eban. In 1955, Wiesel moved to New York to work as a foreign correspondent for Yediot Ahronot, the largest daily Newspaper in Israel. Eban was also posted in New York throughout the 1950s serving as Israel’s ambassador to the United States and, in 1952, was elected Vice President of the UN General Assembly. At the time of the present inscription, Eban had just been appointed as Israel’s foreign minister, the most important position in the Israeli cabinet. As Israel’s foreign minister Eban would defend the country’s reputation after the Six-Day War, asserting in a speech to the United Nations General Assembly that Israel had acted in response to an imminent threat. In very good condition with some light rubbing to the extremities. Preface by Francois Mauriac. From the library of Abba Eban. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box. An exceptional association, commemorating the culmination of Eban’s political career.
“INJUSTICE ANYWHERE IS A THREAT TO JUSTICE EVERYWHERE": First Edition of Martin Luther's King Jr.'s Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos or Community?; inscribed by him
New York: Harper & Row, Publishers, 1967.
First edition of King’s “last grand expression of his vision” (Cornel West). Octavo, original half cloth, illustrated with eight pages of black-and-white photogravures. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, “To Mr. Otto E. Geppert Martin Luther King Jr.” Near fine in a near fine dust jacket, small date to the endpaper. Jacket design by Ronald Clyne. Jacket photograph of Martin Luther King, Jr. by Bob Fitch.
Rare Presidential Commission appointing Baseball Hall of Famer Joe Dimaggio as a member of the Conference on Physical Fitness and Sports; signed by President Richard Nixon
Washington, D.C: 1970.
Rare Richard Nixon Presidential Commission appointing Baseball Hall of Famer Joe DiMaggio as a “Member of the Conference on Physical Fitness and Sports.” Dated September 25th, 1970 the appointment is signed by President Richard Nixon and Secretary of State William Rogers with the Presidential seal. Double matted and framed. In fine condition. From the personal collection of Joe DiMaggio. Included is letter of provenance from DiMaggio’s estate signed by his two granddaughters. An exceptional association linking two American icons. Double matted and framed.
Rare Photographic Portrait of Robert E. Lee and his staff; Inscribed by Civil War Photographer Mathew Brady
Photographic portrait of General Robert E. Lee flanked by his son, General George Washington Custis Lee, on his right and Colonel Walter Taylor on his left. Inscribed by one of the earliest photographers in American history, Mathew Brady, on a mount, “To Col. Robert Alexander Compliments of his friend, M.B. Brady.” The photograph was taken at Lee’s estate in Richmond, Virginia in April of 1865, only days after his surrender to Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox. This is one in a series taken by Brady in the basement below the back porch of the estate and from the original wet plates in the Brady-Handy collection. “This photograph is one of the most celebrated images produced by Brady, who established his reputation in the 1850s as the preeminent portraitist in New York and Washington, D.C. In the aftermath of the Civil War, Brady sought out General Robert E. Lee, who had returned to the Confederate capital at Richmond, Virginia, after his surrender to General Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Court House on April 9, 1865. At the photographer’s request General Lee reluctantly put on his uniform and posed at the back of his residence with his son, General George Washington Custis Lee (left), and his chief of staff, Colonel Walter H. Taylor (right). The image conveys the pathos of defeat for the Confederacy and for Lee personally. For Brady, who had been present at the first battle of the Civil War at Bull Run, this portrait completed his photographic coverage of the conflict” (WAM). Matted and framed. The entire piece measures 17 inches by 14 inches. An exceptional piece of Americana.
“A man may die, nations may rise and fall, but an idea lives on": First Edition of Why England Slept; Inscribed by Jack Kennedy
New York: Wilfred Funk, Inc, 1940.
First edition of John F. Kennedy’s first book. Octavo, original red cloth. Inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper in a contemporary hand, “For Asa Bordages with best wishes Jack Kennedy.” The recipient, Asa Bordages was a feature writer for the New York World-Telegram and playwright known for the 1941 play Brooklyn USA. Introduction by Henry R. Luce. Lightest of rubbing, near fine in a very good dust jacket with some small chips and wear to the extremities. Housed in a custom half morocco clamshell box.