Lot 191: (WASHINGTON, GEORGE.) SPARKS, JARED. Autograph Letter Signed, to Louisa Lear Eyre ("My dear Mrs. Eyre"),
01 November 2016
New York, NY, USALive Auction
Description: WASHINGTON'S BIOGRAPHER SENDS COPIES OF THE FIRST PRESIDENT'S LETTERS (WASHINGTON, GEORGE.) SPARKS, JARED. Autograph Letter Signed, to Louisa Lear Eyre ("My dear Mrs. Eyre"), reporting that he had shipped to her Washington's Letters, explaining that he obtained the copies of the letters from her father, noting that he never saw the originals and, in a postscript, adding that Adams's Express was employed to ship the package. 1 1/2 pages, with integral blank, ruled paper; folds. With the original envelope. (MRS) Cambridge, 31 December 1856
". . . [T]his day I have sent to the Philadelphia Express in Boston the volume of Washington's Letters. It will probably be delivered at your residence. . . ."
"The copies were sent to me by your father, I think about the year 1830. I had before conversed with him about the letters, but I never saw the originals, nor do I know in whose possession they then were. The copies came to me in loose sheets, & I had them bound into the volume as you now see it.
"I always supposed the originals belonged to your father, & in such case I presume they ought now to be yours. I hope you will succeed in obtaining them. . . ."
The copies of the George Washington letters referred to in the present lot are those made by Benjamin Lincoln Lear (1791-1832) from the originals addressed to his father, Washington's personal secretary, Tobias Lear. Benjamin Lincoln Lear sent, around 1830, the copies to Jared Sparks, who, in turn, sent the copies to Louisa Lear Eyre. Eyre used the letters as source material for her book, Letters and Recollections of George Washington, New York, 1906.