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Lot #120
George Washington

Remarkable sketch and note by Washington on his franking privilege

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Estimate: $8000+
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Remarkable sketch and note by Washington on his franking privilege

ANS signed “G. W—n,” one page, 3 x 2, no date [but circa 1780s]. Short note concerning his nascent franking privilege, written next to a unique, small sketch of a pointing hand done by Washington. In full: "As the Law exempting me from payment of Postage, is not worded as I expected it w’d have been, and as I believe it was intended to be—Pray let me know whether you are charged Postage for my letters to you?—Not meaning you should do so. At Phil'a, no charges made of my letters Franked." Handsomely archivally matted and framed with a portrait to an overall size of 12.5 x 18.5. In fine condition.

The Continental Congress gave itself franking privileges—the ability to send send mail for free by applying a signature—as early as 1775. On April 28, 1784, Revolutionary War hero George Washington was extended the franking privilege in his capacity as a private citizen. When Washington became president in 1789, he continued to use this private franking privilege, even for official duties. It was not until February 20, 1792, that the privilege was formally extended to the executive branch of the new government. A unique and desirable Washington autograph.

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: Fine Autographs and Artifacts
  • Dates: #525 - Ended April 11, 2018

This item is Pre-Certified by PSA/DNA
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