Union Pacific Railway: A Most Interesting Document. This invitation was issued by Samuel Hallett (1827-1864), a railroad executive and investor who was involved with the construction of the easternmost leg of the transcontinental railroad. While the invitation is undated, it is presumably from 1863 or early 1864. Hallett was accused of substandard railroad construction by Orlando A. Talcott, who was chief engineer on the Kansas Pacific Railroad. Talcott's accusatory letter to President Lincoln was leaked to Hallett, resulting in an assault on Talcott by one of Hallett's brothers. In retaliation, Talcott shot Hallett dead in the streets of Wyandotte, Kansas, thus ending a brief but important chapter in the early days of the transcontinental railroad.

    The other interesting aspect of this invitation is the appearance in three of the corners of what appear to be the autographs of S. L. Clemens (Mark Twain), Eugene Field, and Bret Harte. On the reverse is a 1935 testimonial from Eugene Field II, attesting that this invitation came from the library of his famous father. However, the autographs, while fairly convincing, are forgeries (even the one of his father, Eugene Field). We will leave it to the reader to draw his own conclusions. Nonetheless, an important early Union Pacific artifact. 8.25" x 5.5". Excellent condition.

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    Auction Dates
    Nov-Dec, 2011
    30th-1st Wednesday-Thursday
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