23 Aug 2019
June 18, 2013 - Filed under: Antiques News,Auctions — Harriet

A letter written by Abraham Lincoln just five months before he became the 16th United States President was sold at auction in the US for $18,720, which included a buyer’s premium.

The letter was sold at an auction in South Carolina following an appraisal on the Antiques Roadshow, aired by PBS.

A woman from South Carolina had taken the letter along to the Antiques Roadshow – which was being filmed in Myrtle Springs – believing it was worth a few thousand dollars. Her father was a collector of autographs and had given the letter to his daughter, although she didn’t know anything about the letter or how it had been acquired. The letter was placed in the Indiana State Museum before being auctioned. The date on the letter is June 18, 1860, addressed to “Hon. William Jones” and declining an invitation to visit Jones and other friends in Indiana due to being busy with his presidential campaign. It is believed that Lincoln was influenced by Jones, who was an avid supporter. Abraham Lincoln became president just five months after the signed letter was composed.

Although a treasure such as this is a valuable discovery, bought from a dealer the letter would have been available at a lower price, as a buyer’s premium wouldn’t have been included. The same can be said for furniture; an antique dining table , for example, may be available at auction, but buying at an antique dealer allows a person to avoid a buyer’s premium. Cumbria dealers will have a selection of items available.

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