Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Eugene Field Autograph Letter Signed. Ten pages, 5" x 8.25", "The Den", Columbia, Missouri; circa 1872. A letter to a Miss Stephens written while Field was attending the University of Missouri. In part:

    "You said last Saturday night that it was a real enjoyment to receive and read letters. I am a most benevolent young man (you know it is well to have at the least, one good quality), and I am going to send you these few lines by way of explanation and by way of affording you some enjoyment. What I am anxious to explain is this: Mrs. Sanders told me last night, or rather tonight, that you had heard that I had said Miss Stephens needed two years more practice and teaching to become a good singer. I heard too that you were quite vexed with the remark. This, I believe, is a fair statement of the case as given me by Mrs. Sanders. What I really did say was this; that Miss Stephens ought to take lessons in vocal music not less than three years longer, and at the end of that time, I did not hesitate to say, she would be one of the finest singers in the west. Now you should consider this a compliment. Most young ladies might drill from this time until dooms day and still be but very mediocre musicians. In fact, unless a person be a genius, perfection in music can be attained only with assiduous study. I might tell a vin, foolish girl that she was a Parepa or a Kellogg but when I met with one like yourself, endowed with a good taste for music and a fine voice, I feel rather inclined to encourage that one to a still higher cultivation of the art... Let it be sufficient compliment that I should say that you can well afford to spend two or three years in cultivating your musical taste. I should only recommend such a course to a really talented person. The night is far advanced. These bungling sentences will give evidence to my drowsiness...I hope you do not hate me yet. I like you very much. I do not hesitate to say I admire you. You must at least admire my frankness. I enjoy your society. You are very original. I hate hum-drum people. If you are rebel in your sympathies you have one bluecoat admirer and friend and I don't refer to the Major either. Adieu. I may go to the city tomorrow. Hope to see you soon again. Au revour." Accompanied by a short postscript on a notecard. A very early letter by the noted American writer; housed in a custom slipcase.

    Usual mail folds, lightly toned. Boards have light shelf wear and bumped corners. Otherwise very good.

    Shipping, Taxes, Terms and Bidding
    Calculate Standard Domestic Shipping

    Sales Tax information  |  Terms and Conditions

    Bidding Guidelines and Bid Increments

    Glossary of Terms

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2018
    18th Wednesday
    Internet/Mail Bids: 9
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 107

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    25% on the first $250,000 (minimum $19), plus 20% of any amount between $250,000 and $2,500,000, plus 12% of any amount over $2,500,000 per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Only 41 days left to consign to the 2019 May 9 - 10 Space Exploration Signature Auction Featuring The Armstong Family Collection Part II!

    Learn about consigning with us

    Heritage Auctions and Mr. Chad Reingold were...professional and courteous in all transactions and provided outstanding service in answering my many emails. I recommend them at the highest level.
    Killy M.,
    Melbourne Beach, FL
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search

    Recent auctions

    2019 January 15 "Say it Loud" The John Silverstein Collection of African American Social History - Dallas
    2019 January 15 "Say it Loud" The John Silverstein Collection of African American Social History - Dallas
    REALIZED SO FAR $302,219