Near Complete Set of DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE Signers 54 of 56 Autographs For Sale
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Near Complete Set of DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE Signers 54 of 56 Autographs:
Declaration of Independence Signers Collection
54 of 56 Founding Fathers Signatures
Origination of Collection/Provenance: Over the past 3 years, we've meticulously assembled this collection through various long-time collectors and reputable sale houses. In addition, each autograph has been reviewed or authenticated by one or more autograph authentication expert including JSA, PSA/DNA, Universal Archives, RR sales. In addition to most having individual letters of authenticity, the entire collection will be accompanied by a JSA full letter of authenticity for the entire collection.
Particularly noteworthy items are: an extremely rare ink signature of Thomas Lynch, Jr.; a 1781 Continental Congress document signed by Arthur Middleton; a 1775 petition to join the Continental Army signed by George Taylor; a 1779 autograph receipt by Lyman Hall; a rare 1761 autograph letter by Francis Lewis; an early 1762 endorsement by John Hancock; and a 1786 land grant by Benjamin Franklin.
The collection rates in overall very good condition. A complete set of Declaration signers represents the pinnacle of American autograph collecting, and this superb offering very nearly accomplishes the feat. These collections rarely come up for sale or sale, with the last being offered in 2012 through RR sales. This is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity, a solid financial investment and how many people can say, I have a signed collection of the Declaration of Independence (figuratively speaking).
We are willing to break this collection up and have several of the key signatures/documents listed individually for sale. If you are interested in the collection, please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.
This link is to the description with images of each autograph in the note, the Thomas Jefferson has sold and is not included
A complete inventory:
Bold ink signature, “Josiah Bartlett,” on an off-white 4 x .75 slip, marked “One of the Council” in another hand. In fine condition, with light foxing and staining.
Scarce ADS, signed “Wm: Whipple,” one page, 7.5 x 6, September 1785. Document recording court costs in the case of Abraham Libbey v. Ebenezer Sullivan, itemized with travel costs, attorney fees, and filing charges, amounting to a total of £11.1.8. In fine condition, with uniform toning. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Sought-after ADS, signed "Mathew Thornton Justice of Peace," one page, 7.5 x 6.5, March 29, 1759. Affidavit concerning the cost of caring for a sick man. In part: "Charges I paid for Man & horse, Doctoring, & Nursing while Sick…The above named Samuel Richardson After Due Caution Made Solemn Oath That the above Account by him signed is Just & True." Removably encapsulated in a mylar sleeve. In fine condition, with edges possibly trimmed.
Bold ink signature and inscription, “The Hon. John Taylor, Esqr., from his humble servant, the author, John Adams, April 9th, 1814,” on an off-white 4 x 2 slip, marked “Discourses on D” in another hand. In very good to fine condition, with trimmed edges, a block of toning to the top, and ink blots to edges. Accompanied by an engraved portrait. This was apparently clipped from the flyleaf of a presentation volume of Adams’s 1790 book Discourses on Davila, a work of political philosophy in defense of the US Constitution.
Ink signature, “Samuel Adams,” on an off-white 5 x 1.75 slip, with a partial manuscript passage on the reverse dated July 7, 1794. In very good condition, with heavy uniform toning, archival tape repairs on the reverse, show-through from writing to reverse, and chipping to edges; the signature remains crisp and bold.
Early autograph endorsement, “28th May—accepted John Hancock,” signed at the bottom of a pay order issued to his uncle Thomas Hancock by Thomas Williams, one page, 6.25 x 4.25, May 20, 1762. In part: "At Ten days sight please to pay Mr. James Nichols or Order the Sum of One Hundred and Eighty dollars it being Cash received for use of His Majesty's Works here." In fine condition. An attractive, early example of his classic signature.
Robert Treat Paine
DS, endorsed twice on the reverse, “Rob’t Paine his att’y,” three pages on two sheets, 9 x 12.5, February 24, 1794. Document in which the sheriff of Suffolk County is commanded to bring Stephen Fales of Boston before the court to respond to a complaint made by William Clapp. Endorsed twice on the reverse by Paine as Fales’s defense attorney. In good condition, with irregularly trimmed edges, repaired separations, and tears and toning to folds.
ALS signed “E. Gerry,” one page, 7.75 x 9.25, March 16, 1805. Letter to “Honble Mr. Bartlett,” in part: “I have rec’d the deed of your land…& wish that a paragraph may be inserted in the advertisement which I have sent to Messrs. Adams & Rhoades for Monday next…Two hundred dollars is a small sum, & till of late could be spared by me at almost any time…but I have been obliged to take money out of one of the Boston banks in consequence of several disappointments, which I have lately experienced: otherwise it should be instantly promised agreeably to your request. The great scarcity of this article, exceeds everything I have ever met with in this country.” In good to very good condition, with a strip of tape along the back of the left edge, overall dampstaining affecting appearance but not readability, scattered small areas of paper loss affecting a few words of text, and professional silking to the reverse to reinforce the otherwise fragile paper.
Ink signature as governor of Rhode Island, “Step. Hopkins, Gov’r,” on an off-white 3 x 1.25 slip. Affixed to a slightly larger card and in very good to fine condition.
ALS signed “Wm. Ellery, Coll.,” one page, 6.5 x 8.5, April 10, 1795. Letter to District Attorney Ray Greene, written as collector of the port of Newport, Rhode Island. In part: “A case has occurred about which I wish to consult you. A considerable property is in my custody which is liable to seizure and confiscation, and in case a libel should be necessary it will require a particular skill and attention to draw it properly. Some of this property the owners wish to be possessed of immediately to put on board their vessel, which is ready to sail…I desire therefore that as soon as you can be released from Court you would come immed’y to Newport.” In fine condition, with light scattered dampstaining affecting appearance but not readability. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Autograph endorsement, "I deliver'd the above Executions to Capt. Phillips in pursuance of the above request, S. Huntington," at the conclusion of a letter sent to him by John Leverett, one page, 6 x 7, January 2, 1786. Leverett's request, in full: "The bearer Capt: Phillips will be kind enough to take the execution in your hands against Dr. Crocker if you will please to inclose it to me." Affixed to a larger sheet. In fine condition, with trimmed edges.
Revolutionary War–dated manuscript DS, endorsed, “Roger Sherman,” one page, 8.25 x 9, issued at Philadelphia, April 5, 1777. A pay order submitted to Jonathan Trumbull, in part: “Please to pay to Roger Sherman Esq’r or order Seven hundred and fifty Dollars Continental currency.” Below, on October 16, 1777, Sherman confirms receipt of “Two Hundred & Twenty five Pounds in full.” In fine condition.
Interesting manuscript DS, signed “W. Williams” and “Wm. Williams, Judge Prob.,” one page, 7.25 x 12.75, April 10, 1806. Probate court document outlining distribution orders for the estate of Mr. Oliver Wattles of Lebanon. Williams makes several handwritten emendations to the body of the document, adding a five-line note at the conclusion. Signed both within the body and at the conclusion by Williams. In fine condition, with some chipping to edges and archival tape repairs to reverse. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Ink signature, “Oliv. Wolcott,” on an off-white 2.25 x .5 slip. Affixed to a larger card and encapsulated in a plastic PSA/DNA authentication holder. In fine condition.
Manuscript DS, one page both sides, 7.75 x 4.25, May 12, 1784. A pay order for Morris's services in the New York State Senate, signed on the front by Pierre Van Cortlandt, in part: "The State of New York, To Lewis Morris…To my attendance in Senate as a Member from the 24th day of January to the 12th day of May, 94 days and 2 Travelling days, 96 days, at 16/ £76.16." Morris endorses below an acknowledgment of the payment on the reverse, in part: "Rec'd May 12th 1784 from Gerard Bancker Esqr Treasurer Seventy six Pounds Sixteen shillings in full for this account." In fine condition. Pierre Van Cortlandt served as the first lieutenant governor of New York and was president of the New York State Constitutional Convention in 1777; on July 9, 1776, he was among 38 delegates to ratify the Declaration of Independence at White Plains. Morris served as a New York state senator from 1783 to 1790.
LS signed “Your most Hum: Serv’t., Phil. Livingston,” one page, 7.5 x 12.25, December 19, 1768. Letter to Richard Derby, in part: “I received your Letter dat’d the 15th Octob’r last by Mr. Broome and confess that I have too Long Neglected to Send you Acc’t Sales & admittance for your Citron left in my hands by Capt. Driver which has proceeded Entirely from want of Attention & by no means from any desire or design to make any Advantage to my self from the delay. I now send you the Sales Inclosed…proceeds being £68.10.0.” In fine condition, with show-through along the left edge from a mounting strip to the reverse, and a few small stains. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
ALS signed “Fra. Lewis,” one page, 7.5 x 9, October 19, 1761. Letter to a gentleman, in part: “I last night by Express received a Letter from Jos. Chew Esqr. of New London, as follows, ‘At last, I have got an order of Court for the Wines to be deliver’d to the Owners, which were Seized at Millford on the propertys being proved,—let me have all the Bills Lading &c. From the Gentlemen Concerned (Yours I have already) and I shall directly order their Wines for New York.’ In answer to this Letter, have desired him to send your wines down directly & draw on me for the Charges…Mr. Stephen Sayer…has a great desire to go a Voyage as a Super Cargo to the West Indies or elsewhere in order to gain Experience and promote himself in business.” Professionally silked on the reverse and in fine condition. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Manuscript DS signed “Wm. Floyd,” one page, 6.75 x 3, May 14, 1801. A payment receipt, in full: “Rec’d Albany, 14 May 1801 from Robert McClellan Treasurer of the State of New York, Sixty Three Dollars in full for the above warrant.” Prominently signed at the conclusion by Floyd. In fine condition. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
ADS signed “Abra: Clark Jun’r Clerk,” one page, 4 x 6, February 22, 1764. The docketing panel of a bill passed in the Provincial Assembly, identified as “An Act for Subjecting the Estate of the General Proprietors of the Eastern Division of this Colony, to the Indemnification of this Province, from any expences in running the Line between New Jersey and New York.” Clark writes: “House of Assembly, February 22, 1764, This Bill having been three times read in the House of Representatives, is passed.” The opposite side bears a section of the manuscript text of the act. In fine condition, with trimmed edges and a small tear to the top edge. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Engraved one shilling New Jersey note, printed by Isaac Collins of Burlington, 4.25 x 2.5, dated March 25, 1776, signed in black ink by John Hart, John Johnston, and John Stevens, Jr. In fine condition, with a central vertical fold and a mounting remnant to the reverse. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Ink signature, "F: Hopkinson,” on an off-white 3 x .5 slip affixed to a larger card bearing a note indicating that the signature was obtained by Boston sculptor P. Stephenson in 1858. In very good to fine condition.
ADS signed “Rich’d Stockton Att’y of the Trustees,” one page, 7.75 x 6, December 9, 1760. In part: “Rec’d Dec’r 9th 1760 of Mr. Sergeant Treasurer of the College of New Jersey the Sum of twenty seven pounds…in the whole amounting to two hundred and twelve pounds…to be applied to…the purchase of Land lately made by the Trustees of the College.” In very good to fine condition, with a central vertical split repaired with tape on the reverse, and ink erosion affecting the sum penned in the lower left. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Ornate vellum manuscript DS in Latin, signed “Joannes Witherspoon Pres.,” one page, 19 x 13, October 1792. A diploma from the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University), signed at the conclusion by Witherspoon as the university’s president, and countersigned by seven trustees. Among the other signers are Continental Congressmen Elias Boudinot and John Beatty, and noted clergyman Ashbel Green. In very good to fine condition, with scattered soiling and a bit of flaking and fading to ink. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Philadelphia Bank check, 5.5 x 2, filled out and signed by Clymer, “Geo. Clymer,” made payable for $20, January 12, 1807. In fine condition, with light irregular toning to the front, and two pieces of reinforcing tape on the reverse.
Vellum manuscript DS, signed “B. Franklin,” one page, 16.75 x 13.5, June 20, 1786. As president of the Supreme Executive Council of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Franklin issues a land grant to William Ball for “a Certain Tract of Land called ‘Middleton.’” Beautifully signed in the left margin by Benjamin Franklin, and countersigned by James Trimble for John Armstrong as junior secretary. The official paper seal affixed to the upper left remains partially intact. In very good to fine condition, with intersecting folds, a small clipped section to the lower left edge, and several points of the seal missing.
Partly-printed DS, endorsed on the reverse, “Rob’t Morris,” one page, 4 x 6.75, September 14, 1795. A promissory note signed on the front by John Nicholson, in part: “Three years after date I Promise to pay Rob’t Morris Esq. or order Ten thousand Dollars.” Boldly and prominently endorsed on the reverse by Morris, and countersigned by three others. In very good condition, with intersecting folds, overall wrinkling, and paper loss to one corner.
Engraved eighteen pence Pennsylvania note, printed by D. Hall and W. Sellers, 2.75 x 3.5, dated April 3, 1772, signed in black ink by John Morton, John Sellers, and Charles Humphreys. In good to very good condition, with heavy folds and creasing, a partial separation repaired with archival tape on the reverse, and general wear.
ALS signed “Benj’n Rush,” one page, 6.5 x 7.75, no date. Letter to a gentleman concerning his real estate dealings, in part: “I send you herewith the bonds and mortgage executed in due form also $124 84/100 for my proportion of the taxes of both houses last year, and for the other charges mentioned in your note all of which I believe are perfectly correct. I had supposed the contract for the last house purchased was on Monday the 13th of October, but upon further recollection I am satisfied it was on Saturday the 11th.” Professionally inlaid into a slightly larger sheet. In very good to fine condition, with dampstaining to edges affecting appearance but not readability. Accompanied by an engraved portrait.
Manuscript DS with an autograph endorsement signed “Geo: Ross,” one page, 7.5 x 12.5, February 1755. A legal document concerning a financial dispute between George Reazor and William Bowsman, endorsed at the conclusion by Ross: “I appear for the above Def’t & Confess Judg’t tp Wm. Bowsman the Pltiff for the sum of Fourty five pounds sixteen shillings & four pence Lawfull money…Geo: Ross Att’ny Def’t by Spec’l Warr’t.” In very good to fine condition, with splits to folds and minor paper loss professionally repaired on the reverse.
ADS signed “James Smith Attorney, Def’t by sp’l Wart.,” one page, 7.75 x 12.25, April 1754. A lengthy legal document in the case of Robert M. Whinery v. William Shriner, beginning: “William Shriner late of York County Yeoman otherwise called Wm. Srinot of the Township of Newbry in the Country of York…was summoned to answer Robert Whinery of a plea that he render to him ten pounds which to him they owe & unjustly detain.” In fine condition, with a few small tape repairs to reverse. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Revolutionary War–dated partial partly-printed DS, endorsed on the reverse, “Wilson,” one page, 3.75 x 6.5, July 1775. The docketing panel from an order issued to a sheriff, ordering two men to appear before the court. Endorsed on the reverse by Wilson to approve a summary of legal fees. In fine condition, with half of the front of the document absent.
Revolutionary War–dated manuscript DS, signed “Geo. Taylor,” one page, 8.25 x 11.75, December 21, 1775. Document headed, “To the Honorable the Committee of Safety of the Province of Pennsylvania—The Petition of Andrew Kachlein of Eason in the County of Northampton.” The petition, signed “Andrew Kachleine,” reads: “Showeth, That your Petitioner is desirous of entering into the Service in the Continental Army and prays to be appointed first Lieutenant in one of the Battalions now to be raised.” Below is a statement supporting the petition, “We the Subscribers recommend the Petitioner as a Sober Active Spirited man of good Character and considerable property and we think him fit to be a first Lieutenant in a Company,” endorsed below by George Taylor, Henry Looker, Christopher Wagner, and John Wetzel. Professionally inlaid into a slightly larger sheet. Reverse bears an ink stamp, “Autograph Collection of Dr. Max Thorek, Chicago.” In fine condition, with toning and light chipping to edges. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Early autograph ink endorsement signed “George Read,” one page, 6.5 x 7.75, December 3, 1752. Docket of a leaf which once contained a legal document concerning the case of Melchior Schultze & Adam Wink. The endorsement, penned by a 19-year-old Read, in full: “Please to Issue the above & You’ll Oblige, Your very Humble Serv’t, George Read Clk to Mr. Molland.” In very good to fine condition, with scattered light staining, and repairs to fold splitting and small areas of paper loss. A desirable pre-Revolutionary example.
ADS, signed "Caesar Rodney, Surv:g Trustee," one page, 10 x 1.5, May 11, 1771. Receipt for a mortgage payment, in part: "Recd of John Hardin the Sum of Thirteen pounds, Eleven shillings, and four pence." Professionally inlaid into a slightly larger sheet. In fine condition. Rodney famously rode his horse 80 miles non-stop to break the deadlock within the Delaware delegation to vote in favor of Independence on July 2, 1776.
Partly-printed vellum DS, signed “Tho. M:Kean,” one page, 20.5 x 11.75, October 25, 1806. As governor of Pennsylvania, McKean grants William Ogden "a certain tract of land, called 'Landsdown' situate in…Venango County…containing Six hundred Acres." Boldly signed in the upper left corner by Governor McKean. Also signed on the reverse by Timothy Matlack, the engrosser of the Declaration of Independence. The crisp white paper seal remains affixed to the upper left. In very good to fine condition, with moderate intersecting folds and areas of light staining.
Revolutionary War-era partial ALS signed “Ch. Carroll of Carrollton,” one page, 6.5 x 6.25, no date but circa 1781. Letter to Maryland Governor Thomas Sim Lee, in part: "Communicating all the intelligence you have received of the movements below, in particular whether de Barras squadron from Newport has joined the Count De Grasse—I have just heard that the French fleet went out of our bay in pursuit of an English fleet & was not returned…We desire to be respectfully remembered to you & Mrs. Lee." Carroll adds a brief postscript apologizing for the "scantness" of the missive. In very good to fine condition, with scattered light toning and foxing, and a tear/hole affecting a few words of text.
On August 25, 1781, a French fleet under the command of Comte de Barras left Newport, Rhode Island, and sailed south to deliver siege equipment to the forces of the Comte de Grasse anchored at Chesapeake Bay. When a British fleet led by Sir Thomas Graves arrived at the mouth of the Chesapeake on September 5th, de Grasse and a line of 24 ships sailed out to meet the encroaching British flotilla. Although the battle proved evenly matched, the strategic decisions of de Grasse enabled de Barras's fleet to arrive unmolested, and subsequently prevented the Royal Navy from supporting or evacuating the forces of Lieutenant General Lord Cornwallis at Yorktown, Virginia.
Revolutionary War–dated ALS signed “Sam’l Chase,” one page both sides, 7.25 x 12.5, July 30, 1775. A boldly penned letter to a gentleman, in part: “Many judgments have been obtained, and many suits are now…in the Courts of Common Law in this Province, against Persons, who by the late Lines are become inhabitants of your Province. Public Dues…are still due from many of them. Justice requires that they should be answerable to the one and liable to pay the other. I submit to your Consideration, whether it would not be proper to pass a Law to enable our Courts that are already possessed of Judgments or Actions against any of the late Inhabitants of this province to retain them and for our own Sheriffs to execute all process till satisfaction made and to collect all public Dues.” In very good to fine condition, with partial splits to intersecting folds. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Exceptional twice-signed ADS, signed at the conclusion, “T. Stone Def’t,” and endorsed on the reverse, “T. Stone,” one page, 7.25 x 5.25, no date. Legal document penned by Stone in a dispute between “Marmaduke Sims” and “Ignatius Adams and Wife,” in part: “And the said Marmaduke in as much as he hath above alledged in his said plea sufficient matter in Law to preclude the said Ignatius and Eleanor from having their said action against him the said Marmaduke.” Endorsed on the reverse by Stone, “Mr. Fendall—File this joinder…T. Stone.” Professionally inlaid into a slightly larger sheet and in fine condition, with a thin archival tape repair on the reverse. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Manuscript DS, signed “Wm. Paca,” one page, 19.5 x 13, October 27, 1783. As governor of Maryland, Paca grants Jacob Parker the "Tract or Parcel of Land called Forest Grove" in Worcester County. Prominently signed in the left margin by Governor William Paca and countersigned by Chancellor John Rogers. In very good to fine condition, with light staining and toning, paper loss at fold intersections, and the seal detached but present; Paca's signature is in the clear, and unaffected by any flaws. In his 1995 reference History Comes to Life, Kenneth Rendell places Paca's autograph material into the 'rare' category among the Signers.
Richard Henry Lee
Partial ADS signed “Richard Henry Lee,” one page both sides, 8.5 x 2.75, no date. The concluding portion of a document pertaining to a parcel of land, signed at the conclusion by Richard Henry Lee and countersigned by three witnesses. In good condition, with repaired tears passing through Lee’s signature, light dampstaining, and chipping to edges. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Francis Lightfoot Lee
ALS, one page, 6 x 7.25, December 27, 1770. Letter to George Turberville, mainly concerning the monetary and business matters of his brother, William Lee. In part: “I have just recd. a Letter from Mr. W. Lee in which he informs me that fearing he should be pressed for money, he had presented your bill to Mr. Russell who refused payment & it was noted for non-payment. Mr. Lee says he will take care that you sustain no kind of inconvenience from it. Mr. Lee’s ship may be expected early in next month, & I hope my Dear Sir, you will give her all the Assistance in your power; as a relation & acquaintance he claims the preference, & I don’t doubt but you will allways find in him an honest Friend. Sometime agoe I wrote to you, begging the fav’r of you to take care of the few things I had at Sandy Point, to wit, 3 Mattrasses, 3 Counterpanes, 2 p’r of blankets, & a Cask, or chest containing bottled spirit. I have never heard whether you rec’d the Let’r. I fear they will not be taken care of there.” The integral address leaf has been professionally inlaid into a larger sheet. In fine condition.
ALS, one page, 7.75 x 3.25, October 16, 1788. Letter to Mr. T. Metcalf, in full: “It is not in my power at this time to pay the Bond or any part of it in Money or Goods—But it will probably be in the course of a Month—as soon as it is I will inform you & will pay it.” In very good condition, with heavy intersecting folds, creasing, small tape repairs on the reverse, and mild staining. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Benjamin Harrison and George Wythe
Revolutionary War–dated partly-printed DS, signed three times by Benjamin Harrison, “Benj. Harrison,” and once by George Wythe, “G. Wythe,” one page both sides, 8.25 x 13, April 8, 1783. As governor of Virginia, Harrison appoints Samuel Hanway as “Surveyor of the County of Monongalia,” with an intriguing note: “This commission is to be nul & void provided the present Surveyor, who is supposed to be killed by the Indians, shall be alive.” The reverse bears the endorsements of the professors of the College of William & Mary, including fellow Declaration signer George Wythe and Bishop James Madison, the college’s president and cousin of the future American president of the same name. In very good condition, with intersecting folds, scattered staining, and a bit of paper loss to edges. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Thomas Nelson, Jr.
Manuscript DS, signed “Thos. Nelson, Jr.,” one page, 7.5 x 9.25, June 28, 1786. A financial document, in part: “Know all Men, by these Presents, that Mr. Thomas Nelson, Jr,. the County of York, & Nath. Burwell…are held and firmly bound…in the just and full sum of Three hundred Sixty Six Pounds fourteen shillings sterling money.” In fine condition, with tiny splits at edges of the folds. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Revolutionary War–dated partly-printed DS, endorsed on the reverse, “W. Hooper,” one page, 8.25 x 6.5, September 25, 1779. Legal document commanding the sheriff of Rowan County to “take the Body of Benjamin Miller…and him safely keep so that you have him before the Judge of the Superior Court of Law, at Salisbury…to render and satisfy the Office the Sum of three pounds nineteen shillings…adjudged for Costs of his Suit.” Endorsed on the reverse by Hooper. In very good to fine condition, with small splits to edges and light dampstaining. Accompanied by a manuscript bill accounting for the fees related to the lawsuit.
Ink endorsement signature, "J. P. atto," on the reverse of a manuscript legal document, one page, 7.5 x 4.5, February 6, 1786. Writ order addressed to the Sheriff of Granville County to "take the bodies of John John Potter & Riehard Wilkins" and to render unto Thomas Greenwood the sum of £32.6.0. In fine condition, with light toning along folds.
Revolutionary War–dated manuscript DS, one page, 8.25 x 8.75, April 10, 1778. Legal document concerning a bail payment, in part: “Know all men by these presents that We John Williamson and Joseph Hews Esqr…stand firmly Bound unto Evan Skinner high Sheriff…in the full and just sum of Two thousand pounds…The Condition of the above obligation is in such that if the above…John Williamson…make his personal aperance Before the Justices of our Superior Cort.” Boldly signed at the conclusion by both parties. In fine condition. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA.
Ink signature, “Edward Rutledge,” on an off-white 15.75 x 1.75 slip clipped from an oversized indenture, with a large seal removed from between his first and last names; the slip has been folded to bring the halves of the signature closer together. In very good condition, with toning, small pieces of tape along the bottom, and aforementioned vertical folds.
Revolutionary War–dated manuscript DS, signed “A. Middleton,” one page, 7.75 x 6.25, December 29, 1781. Pay order issued to John Ross in Philadelphia, in full: “Four months after date, please to pay to Alex’r Moultrie Esqr., or Order, Two hundred Spanish milled Dollars, and charge the same to the state of South Carolina.” Signed at the conclusion by four of South Carolina’s delegates to the Continental Congress: Arthur Middleton, Thomas Bee, Isaac Motte, and Nicholas Eveleigh. Endorsed on the reverse by Moultrie, indicating receipt of the funds. In fine condition. Accompanied by a full letter of authenticity from JSA. A superior war-dated exemplar signed by South Carolina’s delegates to the Continental Congress, highlighted by the scarce and highly sought-after Middleton.
Thomas Lynch, Jr.
Excessively rare ink signature, "then no lo, Tho. Lynch,” on an off-white 1.75 x .75 slip clipped from a longer autograph letter, affixed at one edge to a slightly larger slip. In fine condition, with a central vertical fold. Accompanied by a photocopy of a certificate of authenticity from Charles Hamilton, dated September 18, 1995, stating: "I certify that the signature 'Tho. Lynch'…is an authentic, original signature of the famous signer of the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Lynch, Jr." Also includes a full letter of authenticity from University Archives. Provenance: Remember When sales, March 15, 1997.
With the rise of autograph collecting in nineteenth-century America, one of the first areas of specialization was Signers of the Declaration of Independence. Apart from the Signers' central role in American history and the unusual significance of their autographs—after all, writing their names is what ensured their immortality—obtaining all 56 represented a goal that, with a little determination, could be achieved by a resourceful collector. It quickly became evident, however, that there were two notorious ‘stoppers’ among the Signers: Button Gwinnett and Thomas Lynch, Jr. It is not entirely clear which is rarer—while Gwinnett was generally thought to be the rarest of all signers, recent studies have proclaimed Lynch as the scarcer of the two. This is an unusually bold, well-preserved example of Lynch's signature.
Thomas Heyward, Jr.
Large ink signature, “Tho’s Heyward, Jr.,” on an off-white 3.5 x 1.75 slip. Affixed to a slightly larger card and in fine condition.
Rare Revolutionary War–dated ADS, one page, 7.5 x 2.5, May 4, 1779. Receipt of payment, in part: "1779, Rec'd 4th May of Dr. James Dunsany the sum of Thirteen Hundred & two pounds five shillings…Carolina Currency, which he Rec'd of Mr. Joshua Lockwood for me—Rec'd pr Lyman Hall." In very good to fine condition, with a few repaired edge tears. Hall remains among the rarest of all Declaration signers.
Manuscript DS, signed “Geo. Walton,” one page, 12.25 x 7.75, January 9, 1786. Official document issued in the County of Chatham, Georgia, in part: "To all and singular the Sheriffs within the said State greeting, You are hereby commanded that of the Goods and Chattels, Lands Tenements of Francis Paris…you cause to be made as well thirty-four Pounds one Shilling and six Pence Sterling which in the superior Court of the said County…was adjudged to Isaac La Roche of the said County of Chatham for his Damages." Boldly signed in the upper left by Walton as Chief Justice of Georgia. The white paper seal affixed to the upper left remains fully intact. In very good to fine condition, with light staining to the top, two old tape stains, and archival reinforcements to fold splits on the reverse.
In addition to the items signed by these 55 signers is one signed by Timothy Matlack, the political leader from Pennsylvania best known for engrossing the Declaration of Independence on parchment: Revolutionary War-dated manuscript DS, signed "Attest T. Matlack Sec'y," four pages on two adjoining sheets, 8.25 x 13, September 3, 1778. Lengthy indenture concerning "a certain Plantation or Tract of Land Situate on Stephen's Run a branch of Crooked Run in the said County of Frederick." Signed at the conclusion below the affixed white paper seal by Matlack as secretary of the Supreme Executive Council of Pennsylvania. Intersecting folds with repaired partial separations and light soiling, otherwise fine condition. Accompanied by a complete typed transcript of the lengthy document.