Apr 27, 2017 - Sale 2444

Sale 2444 - Lot 121

Price Realized: $ 1,250
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 500 - $ 750
(CONSTITUTION.) Facsimile printing of Alexander Hamilton's draft of the Constitution, bound with related letters by his son. 18 lithographed facsimile pages. 4to, contemporary 1/2 calf, minor wear; 3 manuscript letters tipped in or laid down to endpapers; gilt label of Samuel H. Gookin on front board. Np, circa 1870

Additional Details

The printed portion is a facsimile of the original manuscript draft of the Constitution now in the Hamilton Papers at the New York Public Library. The 3 Autograph Letters Signed are from Alexander Hamilton (1786-1875, son of the Founding Father) to Samuel H. Gookin, dated New Brunswick, NJ, January-May 1870. The first apologizes for the delay in discussing the facsimile, the second promises a "letter of comment" on the facsimile in the next week, and the third explains the facsimile at length: "The original . . . was read to the federal convention in the early part of the session, and introduced with a speech of such great elegance and power that the noble and distinguished delegate Oliver Ellsworth immediately rose as Hamilton concluded, and . . . remarked that the profound, enlightened and bold political theory they had heard and all admired, none dare follow. The scheme of Hamilton looked to the establishment of a perfect nationality, as essential to a great empire. . . ." This copy was apparently offered in a Goodspeed catalogue in 1962, but we know of no other copies at auction since 1924.