Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Robert Smith Todd, Father of Mary Todd Lincoln, Autograph Letter Signed "R.S. Todd", three-fourths of a page, 8" x 9.5", Frankfort [Kentucky], 23 January 1827, to "My dear wife" [Elizabeth Parker Todd]. Noting a failed attempt to send a letter by way of a visitor to Lexington, he writes again "lest you might infer that I had been culpably negligent in that particular. I calculate on being at home on Saturday . . . but at all events on Sunday. Mary Ann is only waiting for a hack to go up & I expect an opportunity will offer tomorrow or the next day. My time has been much occupied by business, which has become exceedingly laborious. I am very anxious . . . to be at home with you and the children." Todd, a Lexington banker and politician, was twice married. Elizabeth, his second wife, had a poor relationship with stepdaughter Mary Ann, who recalled her childhood miserably. The delightful aspect of this letter is the mention of eight-year old Mary, who Todd had obviously taken with him to the state capital. Mary learned to love politics at her father's knee and at his table - where Henry Clay was often a guest - and it was experience that must have helped her choose as a husband the man who became the most honored and beloved of all American statesmen. The letter has some separation along the folds, especially on back page (also has a circular tear on back page). Near very good.

    : possibly from Turner, lot 4; Sotheby Parke Bernet Galleries, New York, sale of 2-3 December 1981, lot 571.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    November, 2008
    20th Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 8
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,905

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $9) 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
    Consign to the 2019 November 14 - 15 Space Exploration Featuring The Armstrong Family Collection™ Part IV Signature Auction - Dallas.

    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 May 14 Historical Manuscripts Grand Format Auction - Dallas
    2019 May 14 Historical Manuscripts Grand Format Auction - Dallas
    REALIZED SO FAR $735,674