Lot 1534: PINE CREEK RAILWAY CO.
29 October 2016
Brussels, BelgiumLive Auction
Description: 20 March 1885 PENNSYLVANIA. 6% First Mortgage Bond of $1000. brown, black. No 3101. This striking bond with three decorative vignettes is signed by Trustees William Kissam Vanderbilt and Chauncey Depew and transferred on the reverse to William H. Vanderbilt. William K., the grandson of Commodore Vanderbilt, became the family patriarch upon the death of his older brother Cornelius in 1899. In the first issue of Forbes that covered America's Richest (March 2, 1918), "Willie K." was listed as one of "Our 30 richest Americans" with an estimated fortune of $100 million and an annual income of $5 million ($60,000,000 in 1990$s). Although "Willie K." was an able Vanderbilt railroad man, his interests lay outside business. Willie was a great supporter of yachting, racing, art and architecture. He was also noted for giving the most expensive party of the 1880's, costing $250,000 ($13,000,000 in today's $s) and buying a title for his family when his daughter Consuelo married the Duke of Marlborough (related to Winston Churchill). Willie was definitely one of the most colorfulVanderbilts. The co-signer as Trustee is Chauncey Depew who was the Vanderbilts' attorney. Chauncey was a talented politician and speaker, whose "gift of the gab" smoothed the way for the Vanderbilt railroad monopoly. Chauncey was one of the U.S.'s top attorneys and he is in a large measure responsible for the wealth of the Vanderbilt dynasty. The hole-cancellations do not really spoil the signatures.
Condition Report: EF