Lot #8236
Ronald Reagan

Heartfelt and heartbreaking Christmas Eve letter from Reagan to his estranged daughter: "We ask ourselves, 'what did we do wrong?' We were once a loving family"
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Estimate: $20000+

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Description

Heartfelt and heartbreaking Christmas Eve letter from Reagan to his estranged daughter: "We ask ourselves, 'what did we do wrong?' We were once a loving family"

ALS signed “Love, Dad,” one page both sides, 6.25 x 8.5, personal letterhead, December 24, [1990]. Letter to his estranged daughter, Patti Davis, in full: "Alright I’ll quit bothering you but I had more in mind than arguing politics. The line in the song says it all; 'The days dwindle down to a precious few.' On Feb. 6th I’ll be 80 years old. Your mother and I are hard put to understand the separation between us and our first born. It didn’t just happen with your growing up and leaving home. I can recall your mother coming home in tears after driving you to school. She couldn’t understand your complete silence even to the point of your not saying 'good bye.' Was it having to share with a new born brother? I remember a loving daughter who never let us leave the house without waving good bye from the window. We have some snap shots that reveal a difference in a little girl. We ask ourselves, 'what did we do wrong?' We were once a loving family. Well as I said earlier 'I’ll stop bothering you' but I don’t understand the separation of our family. I recall a little girl sitting on my lap and asking me to marry her. Her mother across the room behind her signaled me to say 'yes.' So I did and explained we’d have to wait til she was a little older." In fine to very fine condition. Accompanied by the original mailing envelope, addressed in Reagan's own hand and bearing a pre-printed free frank. Also includes a handsome leatherbound presentation folder (erroneously denoting the date as 1989 on the gilt-stamped spine), as well as a full letter of authenticity from JSA.

The eldest child of Ronald and Nancy Reagan, Patti Davis became estranged from her family after years of political activism and public opposition against her father's conservative policies, adding to the familial strife with a series of thinly veiled autobiographical novels. Written during a particularly trying period, this emotional letter captures Reagan reflecting on his family’s history as well as on his own mortality—“‘The days dwindle down to a precious few.’ On Feb. 6th I’ll be 80 years old.” A moving letter from father to daughter in the hopes of reconciliation, which would come at last in the mid-1990s following the news of his diagnosis with Alzheimer's.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: Presidents
  • Dates: February 11 - February 18





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