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    Phineas T. Barnum Autograph Letter Signed to His Partner James Bailey A.L.S. "P.T. Barnum", 1 p., 6" x 9.5", [Franklin County, NY], Aug. 27, 1889, docketted by Bailey on the verso in pencil. Barnum writes: "The London papers don't seem so ready to notice us as Provincial papers, probably fearing to give us too much free advertising. But that meeting of the Metropolitan Railway in London gets us noticed by London Times. Telegraph and all leading London papers, and they evidently generally think we shall draw crowds, which I do not doubt. When do you expect to sail, & what date do you think it best for me to go? I hope you have bargained with Courier Company for prices of my books of 2 qualities if you want them though. I don't think we can sell many there - especially of high price binding & paper. As I wrote you yesterday - I shall leave here for home next week Wednesday 4th Sept & arriving there 5th if no accident prevents. Truly Yours P T Barnum". James Bailey, Barnum's former competitor and now business partner, adds his holograph on the verso docketting: "Notify Barnum when sail/ Show sails Oct. 18 / 2 kind Barnums Life / Can't show Phila too late / bills boxed for London / agents gone." Barnum and Bailey, who had originally partnered in 1881 and split ways in 1885, had reunited in 1888 to form "Barnum & Bailey Greatest Show On Earth", which toured around the world. This letter is no doubt making plans for the London leg of that tour.

    Accompanied by a double-sided yellow flyer, likely circa 1881, announcing "P.T. Barnum's Greatest show on Earth, and the Great London Circus, Sanger's Royal British Menagerie" in New York. This would be the premier of the use and presentation of a three-ring circus.

    The letter has a light waterstain at bottom margin, ink remains clear, legible, and ideal for display. Flyer has archival tape at top, with a few tiny tears at margins. Engravings are quite clean and very attractive. Overall condition of both items is very good.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2007
    16th-17th Monday-Tuesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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