Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    George H. W. Bush Archive. A group composed of six autograph letters signed, ten typed letters signed, and a Barbara Bush typed letter signed, dating from August 2, 1985 to December 19, 1992. All of the letters are signed either "George" or "GB" and are addressed to Congressman Dan Rostenkowski, a U.S. Representative from Chicago who was friends with the Bush family and who had a hand in major legislation throughout the 1980s as Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee.

    George Bush and Dan Rostenkowski were fairly close friends, and supported each other's careers through the years. In a September 26, 1989 typed letter, Bush wrote to Rostenkowski to ask for his support concerning the proposed Jenkins-Archer capital gains. In regards to his vote, Bush wrote in part: "You will be offered an alternative to the Jenkins-Archer capital gains proposal. No matter how you dress it up, that alternative is a tax increase - plain and simple. That's no alternative, and my response will be equally plain and simple - veto. The timing for this vote is excellent. The Nation is enjoying its 82nd consecutive month of economic expansion - the longest in peacetime history. Support for a capital gains differential is a vote to continue that prosperity, and I ask for your support when the Jenkins-Archer proposal comes to a vote. Sincerely, George Bush."

    After his meetings with Chairman Gorbachev and various NATO leaders, Bush sent a letter to Rostenkowski detailing what was achieved. Two pages, 8.5" x 11", Washington, D.C.; December 21, 1989, in part: "My talks with Chairman Gorbachev gave me a better sense of the man and his priorities, and he now has a better appreciation of me and of U.S. policies. These insights will serve us well as we enter what promises to be a new era in the relationship. The agenda permitted me to put our ideas on the table first. These included proposals to start improving our economic relationship and give new impetus to arms control. We agreed to hold a U.S.-Soviet Summit in the United States during the last two weeks in June and have developed an ambitious agenda leading up to it..." Bush also made Dan Rostenkowski his Representative at the Poznan International Trade Fair, held June 9-16, 1991 in Poland. Rostenkowski had already represented Bush at the trade fair in 1989. On the press release for this announcement, dated April 12, 1991, Bush wrote in the top corner, "Rosty Represent us well old pal! GB".

    There are also a number of lovely handwritten letters from Bush to Rostenkowski which reveal the close friendship the two men had, despite Bush having to deny or cancel plans with his friend. A November 23, 1991 card from the White House reads, in full: "Hey Rosty, I can't come on May 14th. I'd love to know how to lower my handicap. I'd love to see Grant Spaeth who holds the job C Pres USGA, that my Dad and my grandfather had; but the Queen of England is here; and I want to be at her side. Hell the Salmons 'thanks' GB". In another short note that Bush wrote to his friend on October 19, [no year], the president had to refuse an invitation but wanted to underline his friendship with 'Rosty". It reads, in part: "I wish I could be with you, but I'll be in New York. You are my friend, past, present, & future; and I treasure that friendship. Warm Regards, George Bush."

    A number of the letters have the original transmittal envelopes accompanying them. A small, but insightful archive of communications between Bush and Rostenkowski during an important time in each of their lives. A great addition to any collection.

    Condition: Uneven toning and soiling throughout. Signatures are bold. Some ink has smeared in places, else good.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2018
    25th Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 4
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 370

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    25% on the first $250,000 (minimum $49), 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 36 days left to consign to the 2019 November 14 - 15 Space Exploration Featuring The Armstrong Family Collection™ Part IV Signature Auction - Dallas!

    Learn about consigning with us

    The pre and post sales experience was wonderful and flawless. Heritage has the best in-house operation I have ever seen and their people are not only professional but fun to work with, especially Steve C.

    As for Heritage's online system… Yes the interface is more complex than what we are used to with SAN but what is behind that interface is amazing for sellers and buyers alike. It is real time and for a real serious auction buyer there is nothing better in the auction industry, bar none.
    Ron Cipolla,
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search

    Recent auctions

    2019 July 16 - 18 The Armstrong Family Collection III Space Exploration Signature Auction - Dallas
    2019 July 16 - 18 The Armstrong Family Collection III Space Exploration Signature Auction - Dallas
    REALIZED $4,645,206