Skip to main content
Go to accessibility notice

    Description

    Congress Grants the Franking Privilege to the
    Last Surviving Signer of the Declaration of Independence

    [Declaration of Independence] Letter written to Charles Carroll as the "only surviving Signer of the Declaration of Independence"; datelined Washington, May 22, 1828, the letter grants Carroll the franking privilege as the result of a joint resolution by both Houses of Congress; the letter reads in part,

    "You will be pleased Sir, to receive it, as a token of the distinguished respect...which Congress entertain towards an early and devoted friend to Liberty, and one who stood prominently forward in the purest & noblest land of Patriots, that the world has ever seen."

    It is signed by Speaker of the House, Andrew Stevenson; docketed on the reverse by Carroll "1828 May 22d, Andrew Stevenson's letter, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Answered 25th instant". Light toning in central portion of letter that does not really detract from this Fine and important historical document.

    Estimate $6,000-$8,000

    AN IMPORTANT LETTER FOR COLLECTORS OF SIGNERS OF THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE AS WELL AS COLLECTORS OF THE FREE FRANKING PRIVILEGE.

    This letter is important as it is the result of Congress officially recognizing Carroll, due to his roll as a Signer, as a National treasure. Carroll was 90 years old at the time of this letter, meaning that he had the franking privilege for just 4½ years until his death in November 1832.

    N.B. The toned area in the middle of the letter was actually caused by the secretarial copy of Carroll's reply to Stevenson, which was stored with the letter and which is included with the lot.


    ‡ The owner placed a late bid on this unreserved lot and repurchased it, subject to applicable commission.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    December, 2009
    11th-14th Friday-Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 467

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    15% of the successful bid (minimum $14) per lot.

    Sold on Dec 12, 2009 for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
    Track Item

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    VIEW BENEFITS
    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
      winnings 
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Only 41 days left to consign to the 2021 November 7 Guitars and Musical Instruments Signature Auction!

    Learn about consigning with us

    I don’t often do testimonials but in this case I felt truly obligated to thank Heritage Auctions for the extremely professional job your organization did for me.
    Charlie K.,
    Pittsburgh, PA
    View More Testimonials

    HA.com receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source: Similarweb.com)

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search