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    A Fabulous "America the Beautiful" Autograph Manuscript Signed by Katharine Lee Bates, a true copy. One page, 8" x 13", np nd, on Hammermill bond typing paper, a handwritten copy in its final edited form, signed "Katharine Lee Bates" at the close. The original remains in the Falmouth Historical Society and a diligent market search reveals only one other example of all four stanzas sold in the last 30 years. This present copy previously realized $40,000 at a New York Auction in 2004. "America the Beautiful" first appeared in print in the Congregationalist, a weekly journal, on July 4, 1895. Over the years, it has become the country's unofficial second national anthem. Miss Bates, long-time professor at Wellesley College, couldn't have known that those four stanzas, hastily scribbled into a notebook on a trip West in 1893, would attain such fame. Atop Pikes Peak in Colorado Springs, Colo., she was electrified by the beauty that was her country, and in writing what later became "America the Beautiful," passed on that intense love for her country to all Americans. Miss Bates, who was lecturing at the summer session at Colorado College, joined an expedition to the summit of Pikes Peak in a prairie wagon. She wrote, "It was then and there, as I was looking out over the sea-like expanse..." She rewrote some sections, and the new version was published in the Boston Evening Transcript on November 19, 1904. Perhaps the most intense criticisms centered on the word "beautiful," which some called hackneyed. But Miss Bates refused to change that word; she claimed it best described America. Following the 1904 publication, part of the third stanza was altered, thereafter, the poem stayed the same, for Miss Bates retained the copyright, protecting it from misprints and deliberate changes. The only payment Miss Bates ever received for her efforts was a small check from the Congregationalist when "America the Beautiful" was first published. The present copy is a rare opportunity to own what is our nation's "Second National Anthem" written in the hand of its author and signed.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2006
    12th-13th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 6
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 708

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