Description

    George Francis Train Autograph Letter Signed "Geo Francis Train The Cunning Dictator" along with a personal visiting card with photo. The letter: one page, 4" x 5.25", "Cell 56, Murderer's Row, The Tombs", March 15, 1873, to a Charles H Anderson in response to an autograph request. Train has written a poem as the body of the letter, as follows: "Working Men! Pay no Taxes/ Start the battle! Grind your axes!/ The only thing to save the nation/ Is immediate Repudiation./ Wake up people! Death to Kings!/ Down with Party!/ Smash the Rings" The small card (2.75" x 1.5") has an albumen portrait laid down at left with his name at right. He has crossed out a printed "For President 1872" and written in "For Dictator 1873". There are several other handwritten notes on the verso around a printed facsimile signature.

    Train (1829-1904) is one of the most interesting of all American eccentrics. He made fortunes in shipping, land, railroads, lecturing, and writing. He was possibly the first U.S. presidential candidate to turn a profit as he charged admission to his campaign appearances. Train may be best known and remembered as the real life inspiration for Jules Verne's character Phineas Fogg in Around the World in Eighty Days as Train did make such a trip (in only 67 days) just two years before the book was written. He was very involved in the women's rights movement and financed The Revolution, a newspaper published by Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton. As he aged, he grew more and more eccentric starting and following a number of strange fads. The story is that, in his last days, he would sit in New York's Central Park handing out dimes and refusing to speak to anyone but children and animals. Neither the letter nor the card does anything to lessen Mr. Train's reputation as an eccentric. Fine condition.


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    Auction Dates
    February, 2008
    21st-22nd Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
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