Lot #236
Benjamin Dearborn: Lightning Printed Letter

This lot has closed

Estimate: $500+


Printed letter, one page, 8.25 x 9.75, May 26, 1807. A letter to the "President and Members of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences," in which Benjamin Dearborn proposes to study the effects of lightning and methods of seeking safety from strikes. In part: "As the season of the year is approaching, in which a general apprehension of danger from lightning is most excited, a few remarks, on the various means of seeking safety, may call attention to facts, from which may be deduced some useful rules of conduct during thunder. That the metallic conductor is not a complete guard from the electric fluid, is testified by two instances on the records of the Academy…From early life I have been in the habit of observing the circumstances attending an electric explosion, particularly where the loss of life was a consequence, and no instance has fallen within my knowledge of a person being killed by lightning in a close room…it may be inferred that a close room presents one of the greatest chances of security." In very good condition, with overall creasing and wrinkling, and light toning along the intersecting folds.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: Fine Autograph and Artifacts, Ft. Art and Literature
  • Dates: #610 - Ended June 16, 2021