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    Horace Greeley Archive consisting of five letters, three newspaper clippings, and one addressed envelope spanning the years 1857 through circa 1950. The collection concerns a lawsuit brought by Greeley (1811-1872), founder and editor of the New York Tribune, abolitionist, and 1872 presidential candidate for the Liberal Republican Party (which he founded), against the Burlington Daily State Gazette [Iowa] due to an editorial that appeared connecting Greeley with a railroad deal by the Des Moines Improvement Company. Greeley had allegedly received a check for $1,000 from a mysterious source for lobbying on a bill being proposed in Congress concerning the Company. An additional thirty members of Congress were also implicated. Greeley sued the paper for $10,000 claiming libel.

    The first, a Fair Copy of a D. Rover ALS, one page, 8" x 10", Burlington, February 21, 1837, to Horace Greeley announcing "...I have this day brought suit Horace Greeley vs Wm Thompson & D. Sheward - pubrs. of Iowa State Gazette for a libel...In due time I shall confer with you by letter in reference, to the prosecution & trial, evidence &c. but for the present we must await the action of the defendants. After pleadings and issue, we shall be able to anticipate with some certainty as to the nature of their defense..." Greeley replies in an ALS, four integral pages, 9" x 7", New York, March 4, 1857, in part: "If the publishers of the Gazette make inquiry of their evidence before pleading, I feel sure that they will not attempt to testify...They can doubtless show that they had reason to suppose that I was...paid by the Des Moines Company, but had even this been true, I do not see that it could have justified their abusive article..." He continues by assuring Rover that he doesn't want to make money on the case, but urges him to recover his legal fees. Rover replies in turn in a second Fair Copy of a D. Rover ALS, one page, 8" x 10", Burlington, March 27, 1857, that he was brought up the matter with "...senior member, Mr. Thompson..." who claims that having been absent and only recently returned "...had never seen the article in question. That he would have to look into it before coming to any conclusion."

    The fourth letter, a second Greeley ALS, is dated several months later and is the day before the case was ultimately dismissed. Four integral pages, 9" x 7", New York, July 26, 1857, to D. Rover, in part: "I am sure you will not conclude that I blame you for the course [this has] taken...The suit is disposed of...I want no money gained by the suit and desire nothing from the Gazette folks, but a retraction of what they must now know to be false..." He further expresses his innocence in the matter: "...their show of putting forth as a conclusion...that I clearly received any money of the D. M. Company for my services...adds insult to injury. I was not in Washington [for] weeks of the time that their bill was considered..."

    Also, a later Horace Greeley ALS, one page, 6.5" x 7.75", New York, December 5, 1860, to "Mr. Bowden" regarding "...an infamous story about me..." told to Bowden by a Mr. Comstock which he heard from a Mr. Whipple. Greeley asks: "Why...do you not apply to Mr. Whipple rather than to me...I worked harder for six months in 1844 to elect Mr. Clay...I would gladly have died the next day if by that means I could have given Mr. Clay the election..I spent money that I could ill spare: and the net result is that fools like you give heed to knaves like this Comstock. You are welcome to believe them, only refrain from further insults..." Some weakening of the folds has resulted in separation, but no loss of text.

    With three newspaper clippings from the 1950s concerning the life of Greeley and the preceding civil case and an envelope addressed in Greeley's hand.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2012
    4th-5th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 0
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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