Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice


    Abraham Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas: Election Bet Autograph Display. Betting on the outcome of elections was a popular pastime in 19th century America. Sometimes the payoff was monetary, but it often entailed some sort of public humiliation on the part of the loser. The centerpiece of this framed display is an 8" x 5" document, East Worcester, Massachusetts, July 31, 1860 listing the conditions of a proposed bet on the outcome of the presidential election. E. L. Gustin promised to pay $39.56 to D. W. Thurber, or bearer, if Stephen Douglas did not come within 50,000 votes of Abraham Lincoln in the state of New York. Apparently, Thurber was not a betting man, as his signature appears nowhere but, in hindsight, he should have taken the bet, as Lincoln bested Douglas in New York by 50,136 votes (forget about exit polling and Gallup polls - this guy Gustin was only off by 136 votes!) The display includes book plate engravings of Douglas and Lincoln, a transcription caption card and clipped signatures of Douglas (even toning) and Lincoln. Donald P. Dow designed the frame which was produced by Newcomb Macklin of Chicago. The overall size is 29" x 19".

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    January, 2015
    24th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 11
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 946

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    25% on the first $100,000 (minimum $14), plus 20% of any amount between $100,000 and $1,000,000, plus 12% of any amount over $1,000,000 per lot.

    Shipping, Taxes, Terms and Bidding
    This item cannot be shipped using standard methods. Please contact us for more information. Sales Tax information

    Important information concerning Sales Tax and Resale Certificates. Learn More

    Terms and Conditions  |  Bidding Guidelines and Bid Increments |  Glossary of Terms

    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 32 days left to consign to the 2020 May 22 Space Exploration 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

    2020 February 22 - 23 Americana & Political Signature Auction - Dallas
    2020 February 22 - 23 Americana & Political Signature Auction - Dallas
    REALIZED SO FAR $2,361,883