Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Dashiell Hammett. Typed Letter, Signed, to Prudence Whitfield. [Adak Island, the Aleutians] Alaska: October 23, 1943. Original letter, addressed "Dear Pru," for Prudence Whitfield, the wife of hard-boiled author Raoul Whitfield, signed Dash. Single sheet, recto only, 8 x 11 inches. One vertical and three horizontal folds, as mailed. Three selections of texts noted in the margins with vertical lines written in blue ink, with the note "L[illian]. H[ellman]'s play" referring to Watch on the Rhine in the text; a checkmark and a 4 written in the upper corners in a different hand. Light wear to the bottom edge with minor tears and creasing, potentially some minor paper loss, not affecting any text; horizontal folds just starting to split, more sizable tear (about one inch) at the bottom of the vertical fold, touch of soiling to the bottom margin. Near fine. Hammett was stationed at Adak Island during World War II after Japanese forces attacked a base on Unalaska Island. There he wrote The Battle of the Aleutians (Adak, Alaska : Intelligence Section, Field Force Headquarters, 1943) and contributed to The Adakian, an official newspaper (Molly Scwartzburg, "Corporal Dashiell Hammett's 'The Battle of the Aleutians: A Graphic History, 1942-1943,'" Ransom Center Magazine, accessed online). From the Otto Penzler Collection of Mystery Fiction.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    March, 2019
    6th Wednesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 4
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 467

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    25% on the first $300,000 (minimum $49), plus 20% of any amount between $300,000 and $3,000,000, plus 12.5% of any amount over $3,000,000 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 43 days left to consign to the 2019 October 24 Estate of John Steinbeck Manuscripts Grand Format Auction - Dallas!

    Learn about consigning with us

    Heritage has gone above and beyond my expectations in handling all of my transactions in a thoroughly professional manner. I would not hesitate to recommend them to anyone worldwide for the exemplary auction and valuation services they provide.
    Richard H.,
    Corsicana, TX
    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 SO FAR $4,640,331