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Item 1 - George Washington Catalog 452 (May 2015)

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(we are no longer accepting bids on this item)
Minimum Bid: $1,000.00
Sold Price: $16,114.88 (includes buyer's premium)


ADS, signed “Go: Washington,” one page, 7.25 x 2.5, May 10, 1768. Document reads, in full: “Then Received from Mr. Josh Valentine the Currt. Sum of Fifteen pounds to be allowed for at next settlement.” Signed at the conclusion by Washington. Affixed to a 7.25 x 3.5 light blue sheet and in very good condition, with a central vertical fold, a uniform shade of somewhat irregular toning, and a few scattered spots and areas of fading affecting a few words of text and touching the top of signature.

Accompanied by a January 10, 1873, autograph letter from Mary Custis Lee, which reads, in part, “I did not reply to your letter because the few autographs I had of Genl. Washington were carefully put away…I can only send you one which has been much injured in consequence of the necessity of bringing them all during the war—I could not spare another to anyone…You will see the paper sent is a receipt. Valentine I think was the manager of Mrs. Washington’s estates.”

The daughter of George Washington’s adopted son, George Washington Parke Custis, and wife of Confederate General Robert E. Lee, Mary Custis Lee fully understood the importance of her family ties. As the Civil War got underway and she received warning that the Union Army was planning to seize Arlington—the 1,100-acre estate built by her father, where she had grown up, married, raised her seven children, and buried her parents—she prepared to leave her beloved home. Packing the family silver, George Washington and G.W.P. Custis’s papers, and General Lee’s files, she left in May of 1861, never to return again. Apologizing for the condition of the autograph, “much injured in consequence of…bringing them all during the war,” this is a remarkable receipt signed by America’s first president, carried by his granddaughter through the nation’s bloodiest war, in which her husband was a key figure. Pre-certified PSA/DNA.

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